Dear Philip Seymour Hoffman…

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Dear Philip Seymour Hoffman:

I just found out this afternoon that YOU are Dead.

I didn’t know you but your death matters to me. I am devastated and…so angry and really truly upset!

I wasn’t privy to your private life and your ongoing struggle with drugs. I don’t pretend to think that was easy.

But you had Love. You had children. You had success and respect. To see it all just disintegrate in a flash blink is horrific and terrifying.

You were 46 damn it!

I didn’t know Chad Oulson, 43, either. But when I heard of his death Jan. 13, being shot in a movie theatre for merely texting, I was appalled and shattered. He had a three-year old daughter and loving wife and now… now because of some volatile unthinkable rage, his life is over and their anguish begins.

I didn’t know Naima Rharouity, 47, a mother of two, who died when her scarf got caught in a Montreal subway escalator Jan. 31. The horror of that freak accident haunts me still and my heart breaks for her family and friends.

I didn’t need to personally know any of you for your death to affect me. But I do admit that when unimaginable tragedy strikes, whether avoidable or unavoidable, I am affected. I feel helpless and unnerved.

I feel like I’ve lost a grip on how to maintain a safe and secure existence for myself and my own loved ones. How can any of us be spared from it?

The most I do know is this: As a Catholic, I pray to God to have mercy and grant courage and strength to the families left behind. I pray for them to be able to find their way through the nightmare. As a Writer, I write it out, for only then can I truly express the inner grief and turmoil swirling around inside of me.

I write to acknowledge the fact that another life has been lost and tragically at that.

I write to remember. I write to hope that by putting my thoughts down in print or the digital universe, I’m letting the Dead know that they mattered.

Mr. Hoffman I am so very sad to see you go. You were an artist and one of the great talents of our generation and I won’t forget that.

Grief is like a dark and churning cloud that attacks and then dissipates only to continuously return like a surging wave, engulfing everything and everyone in its path as it goes out and comes in and goes out again.

And so long after the news reports “die out” and you are tacked on to the Memorial tribute list at the Oscars, long after other tragic events clutter the news and Mr. Oulson and Ms. Rharouity are mere tales of months passed, I will remember.

I will take this sadness and evaluate my life and mark and recognize that I am still here. That it is my duty to LIVE and not sink and let slip that grasp I have in my every day.

I will be more aware that though some days I may wallow, there are people who love and need me and I them.

And I will do my best to honour that commitment I have to them and the gift of Life I have been given.

Rest In Peace All.

peekiequeen c. Sun. Feb. 2, 2014

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