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An Ode to Benjamin Wheeler, 6

Posted by on December 18, 2012

benjamin_wheeler_6The world may never forget the name of the person who committed this unspeakable atrocity. We will be buried under the horrible devastation that the young man has brought down on twenty-six families, a small town community, a nation and the world.

There is no way to understand why or how this happened. Sure there will be facts and expert opinions and examinations…but we will never understand…we will always mourn…we will all have been the victims of a most horrible and egregious theft. Twenty six lights of laughter and hope and promise and wonder were snuffed out by an undeniable evil on that Friday morning.

His name and the names of his family members will be repeated thousands of times, if not millions in the coming days as the world tries to come to grips with this horrible tragedy…but I will do my best to forget his name. I will not add to his “fame.” I sincerely wish that the media at large would do the same. I am sad that I can tell you who were the perpetrators in Aurora and Columbine and the others…

These shooters were people once…people who died monsters. Monsters who do not need their names shouted continuously which will most likely lead to more disasters.

Instead I will celebrate the lives of the victims. I will mourn the twenty babies that won’t be able to open Christmas presents next week, that won’t be able to graduate, or get married or have children of their own. I will mourn all of the accomplishments and happiness and sadness they should have been able to experience.

I will feel for their parents and siblings and friends. I will remember the names of the victims.

I will remember the name of Benjamin Wheeler, 6.

Why Benjamin? I don’t know. Is he any more deserving of remembrance than any of the others. No, they all deserve to remembered. They all deserve to be celebrated.

Benjamin’s name just jumped out at me and when I heard the idea to remember the names of the victims…his was the name I picked.

I will do my best to remember them all…and to forget the shooter’s name.

But I am just a man. A man with a bad memory. But I WILL remember little Benjamin Wheeler.

When I heard about the incident, I felt as if I’d been kicked in the chest. I hoped that it was a mistake, that hopefully they would find more survivors. My first thought, like I imagine most people’s first thought was, “Why?” Why babies?

There are no answers, no answers that will ever satisfy the loved ones of the victims. Nothing will ever make this right.

We MUST remember the victims. I will remember all I can, but I promise not to forget, Benjamin Wheeler.

Pick a name. Don’t let them be forgotten. Remember.

Daniel Barden, Charlotte Bacon, Grace McDonnell, Rachel Davino, Olivia Engel, Josephine Gay, Ana M. Marquez-Greene, Emilie Parker, Lauren Rousseau, Dylan Hockley, Dawn Hochsprung, Madeleine F. Hsu, Catherine V. Hubbard, Chase Kowalski, Jesse Lewis, James Mattioli , Anne Marie Murphy, Jack Pinto, Victoria Soto, Noah Pozner, Caroline Previdi, Jessica Rekos, Avielle Richman, Mary Sherlach, Benjamin Wheeler, and Allison N. Wyatt.

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