10.23.2009

"accident?"... "car accident?" I have never felt comfortable with the choice of words... especially if the "accident" is fatal

ac⋅ci⋅dent–noun

1. an undesirable or unfortunate happening that occurs unintentionally and usually results in harm, injury, damage, or loss; casualty; mishap: automobile accidents.
2. Law. such a happening resulting in injury that is in no way the fault of the injured person for which compensation or indemnity is legally sought.
3. any event that happens unexpectedly, without a deliberate plan or cause.


ACCIDENT?
CAR ACCIDENT? FATAL ACCIDENT?
I do not care for the word use ACCIDENT
I guess that it is the appropriate word in the appropriate context after reading the definition
yet I still think that we should find another word
even if it is accident versus intentional
somehow I think we should try to think of an accident as unavoidable
even if it is not intentional... the fault and the blame are there
and the potential for the "accident" to be avoided is always there

here are three incidents involving cars and death
all would be called accidents... none of which were really accidents... were really more like avoidable incidents with fatal out comes

the world would be a different place if people had behaved differently behind the wheel
all of these accidents could have been avoided had the drivers of these cars acted differently

these three people were all friends of mine
all of them were friends to many
each of them were special people who were loved by all who knew them
the loss of life of each of these people brings great sadness to many

Bridget Armitage, Damien Dukavich, and Jim Wilborn
in that order...

I think there are accidental deaths... but honestly... most
"car accidents" are cause by aggressive or negligent drive
be honest in your observations
be more accurate in your word usage
our society needs to find new terms to define this sort of episode
our society needs to moderate its behavior behind the wheel

all this is brought to surface because earlier this week Neil Augenstein shared a youtube to a recording of a song he had written in memory of a girl who had died in a "car accident"
her name was Bridget
Bridget was 17

Neil and the boys from Modest Proposal are getting together for a show this November
which brought this song and this topic to surface
Modest Proposal show announcement on WTOP

here is the song... on youtube
"ALREADY AN ANGEL"

I knew Bridget in high school
Bridget was a beautiful girl inside and out
on the B-CC field hockey team and well liked by all
she was just starting her senior year when this happened

Bridget died in a car crash caused by a series of bad decisions by some kids in their late teens
the driver of the car was going way to fast
if I can recall the circumstances was something like this... there was a hump on East West Highway around the corner from B-CC where cars would catch air if they were exceeding the speed limit by 15-20 miles per hour
the drive of this car were going well beyond this
they did more than catch air
the car launched off the ground like something from a James Bond movie
sending the car soaring through the air and landing in the lobby of an apartment building

Bridget was killed on impact while the driver walked away with a limp that would soon pass

a series of bad decisions
did Bridget enjoy that they were going so fast in her boyfriend's daddy's Jaguar?
was Bridget laughing and egging him on? I do not know?
that is not important... we are not trying to place any blame

boys will be boys
cars and kids are a bad combination
lord knows that I drove fast and loose once or twice myself when I was young and foolish

the quick question?
by the definition of accident this would qualify as an accident
but... of course... this incident could have been so easily avoided had people behaved differently behind the wheel
weighing cause and effect a little more heavily
a little more measure of the worst case scenario

Bridget was killed when I was starting my Freshman year of college
then the summer after my Sophomore year one of my best friends and my room mate was hit and killed while crossing the coastal highway on 28th Street in Ocean City Maryland
Damien was only twenty years old

it is my understanding that Damien was crossing the coastal highway with his older brother Andreaus and another college buddy named Duck
the crossed the two lane road passing in front of a car in the right lane
then entered the vacant left lane
just as Duck and Andreas stepped on the curb
Damien two steps behind them was hit and killed by a car that was traveling fast in the right lane and went to pass in the left lane
over taking that car and hitting Damien in the same move
it is said that Damien was decapitated
there was no open casket ceremony for Damien

again... the speed was an issue
and well... the unsafe passing without taking into account a clear line of sight
three people could have been killed
but... this... like so many other easily avoidable fatal traffic incidents is called an accident

Damien much like Bridget was immeasurably popular
not popular in the captain of the football team sort of way
popular in a kind hearted soul sort of way
Damien was one of my best friends... his death brought great sadness to many people... Damien's absence from this world changed many lives

the last car related death to be mention in this trilogy of accidents is Jim
Jim was more than a friend from high school... Jim was part of a family that was like an extended family to me
Jim was like a brother to me
I am certain that Jim was like a brother to many people

I will not try to be possessive over Jim, Bridget, or Damien... they were all special people... special people to more than just me

Jim seemed have figured it out
as I am 42 and still behaving like a snake chasing its tail
Jim somehow had sorted out the bullshit

at a young age Jim had lost some close friends
yet managed to stay strong from it and move forward
we had shared a sadness as Jim had lost his best friend Rob in a car accident a short time after I had lost one of my best friends, Damien
we dealt with our losses differently

at what seemed like a young age Jim was getting married
in the shadow of the death of his best friend rob who died at the side of his fiance Jim and Sarah agreed to take their lives forward and stay the course
they were married and started their life in the west
if I can recall they moved from Washington state to start their life in Wyoming

Jim was buried the same day that my brother Marc got married

not long after getting married Jim was riding his bicycle to work
from what I heard he was at a four way intersection waiting for the light to change
a car ran the light after it turned red
a car going through the green collided with that car
that car launched into the air and landed on Jim

there was nothing he could do
as if a meteor had fallen from the sky
the reflexes of this amazing athlete could not respond quickly enough
another fatal accident
Jim was dead at the scene

three lives all cut short
three lives all victims of so called accidents

three lives ended not so much by accidents but by avoidable incidents
in all three cases had the drivers of these cars behaved within the limits of the law
then all three of these people would have survived through those fateful days
more than likely all three of these people would be alive today
alive and thriving
still living their lives as friends who are loved and appreciated by so many
but no... that is not the case

one family lost their daughter
another two families lost their sons

brothers and sisters lost their siblings
and so many people lost their friends

it could of all been easily avoided
these accidents did not need to happen




1 comment:

libertyonbikes! said...

EXACTLY!
Your tire blowing out
or hitting black ice
that may be an accident.

Cars should be licenced and treated
like guns. You kill someone, you loose
it, no other chances. You now walk.