We are all guilty of intensely attaching our attention to the national event of the day. Particularly, in the Trump era. While we are waiting for the next presidential foible, life is on the move. Unfortunately, human suffering doesn’t go on holiday while we are busy devising the best country-saving strategy.
While perfectly innocent citizens were being detained across the country in a colossally disorganized execution of an executive order, Nashville’s weeklong nightmare was just beginning.
Uneasy Sunday Morning
It started Sunday morning, January 29, 2017 with news of the shooting death of 18 year old JaVonte Robinson and critically injured 20 year old Roy Hunter (Bre’v), son of Nashville School Board member Tyese Hunter. Since the shooting, three 16 year old males have been taken into custody. That’s a total of five lives and families forever changed by this tragedy that, quite simply, didn’t have to happen as my friend Miranda Christy wrote about earlier this week.
On a lighter note, Ms. Hunter made a brief social media appearance to share the good news of her son’s progress. Godspeed.
Unfortunately, There’s More
On the morning of Tuesday, January 31 we received news of a collision involving two Antioch High School students headed to school. The accident claimed the lives of the 44 year old driver of the other car and the passenger en route to class. The Antioch High School student driver was unharmed, but tragically, passenger 15 year old Andrea was trapped in the car and burnt beyond recognition. (That was difficult to type) Again, so many lives drastically changed. Prayers.
And If That Wasn’t Enough
On the morning of Thursday, February 2, Nashville awoke to the news of distraught 40 year old Juli Glisson heading to the lake with intent to commit suicide. As per usual, Nashville’s finest heroically answered the call to save a fellow Nashvillian. Officers Craig, Diamond, and Mumaw made it to the boat ramp where the woman was preparing to drive into the Cumberland River.
The three heroes, failing to convince Glisson to get out of the car, decided to take action. Officer Craig from the passenger side worked to keep her from putting the car into gear while Officers Mumaw and Diamond were on the driver’s side when Mumaw opened the door prompting Glisson to hit drive and forcing the officers into the cold, turbulent waters.
We sat on pins and needles with the hope that comes with rescue efforts, but it changed as quickly as it happened. Officer Craig made it to land safely. Officer Diamond, who at one point had a grip on Officer Mumaw’s hand, also hit land safely –as did Ms. Glisson. Sadly, Officer Eric Mumaw’s body was recovered just as Nashville’s work day began. Rest in peace.
Not to Worry, We Will Be Alright
Here’s the thing: Nashvillians love Nashvillians. Even as we ‘natives’ become increasingly rare and thousands of creative millennials from across the world make this their home, remnants of small town unity can be spotted and are generally illuminated in times like these. Times like the 1,000 year flood of 2010. Beside the definition of our sister’s keeper, there’d be a picture of the Nashville skyline.
So, I have no doubt that JaVonte’ Robinson’s family is receiving mad love from across the city. The same for Roy Hunter. The Go Fund Me Account for Andrea will reach its goal. Officers Craig and Diamond will be blessed with department love and care and the community they have so selflessly served will offer a lifetime of appreciation in a million ways.
The Ultimate Sacrifice Won’t Too Soon Be Forgotten
Officer Eric Mumaw will forever be our hero. As I write, there is a movement afoot to rename the park where Officer Mumaw made the ultimate sacrifice. I’m also willing to bet the good officer’s family will want for nothing for their remaining days. My gratitude overflows.
It’s not the stuff of table reads and Emmy-seeking performances. It’s the real Nashville, with its blemishes and beauty marks. It’s my Nashville and your Nashville and, like always, we will be alright.