Last week Chris Hurst and his girlfriend of 9 months Alison Parker woke up together, in the apartment they had only recently decided to share. Like most couples in love, they more than likely would have laughed together while sharing the bathroom, passed each other the milk or creamer while they made their coffee and laughed as they flirted with each other. Another morning, another start to a wonderful day for the young lovers. On Wednesday, Chris kissed Alison goodbye, something he probably did each morning, and watched as she left for her early morning shift at WDBJ-TV. Another normal day, another normal couple.
What neither of them knew was later that day, both of their young lives would change forever. Changed because of one man…one stupid, f***** up, low life of a man who had also worked at WDBJ-TV. A disgruntled ex-employee, who according to The Virginia station WDBJ, was “difficult to work with” and was fired for anger problems. An angry young man whom a local sheriff identified as Vester Flanagan, a former TV news reporter who also went by the name Bryce Williams while on-air.
According to nbcnews.com Vester claimed he had suffered racial discrimination and bullying at work and was attacked for being black and gay. “My anger has been building steadily … I’ve been a human powder keg for a while … just waiting to go BOOM!!!!” the gunman faxed to ABC News. Well, that he did. While 24 year old Alison Parker and 27 year old cameraman Adam Ward were filming a live segment from Bridgewater Plaza, the gutless piece of sh** walked up and shot Alison and Adam and injured the guest they were interviewing, Vicki Gardner.
I am sitting here, in my study…here in Melbourne and I feel so sorry for their family, their friends and everyone that knew them. For Chris….for Adam’s fiancé Melissa. But there is some good that I want to focus on at this point. Out of such a terrible tragedy is a wonderful tale of love. Despite the terrible circumstances that tore them apart, we still have to remember and think about the lives they shared before they were suddenly taken away. They each enjoyed such a wonderful time together – falling in love, moving in together and planning a future. Each of them were living life to the fullest.
“It was the best nine months of our lives,” Chris wrote on Facebook. The two of them had known each other at work for a while before there was a romantic spark. But then came the annual holiday party. “Some voice came inside my head and said, ‘Chris, if you don’t ask her out, if you don’t make a move you are going to regret it for the rest of your life,'” he told NBC News. So he did, and they went on their first date on New Year’s Day. “We fell hard for each other,” he told NBC. “We found our soul mates.”
I think there is a lesson in this for all of us. Not to take life for granted….to live each day as if it is our last. You never know what will happen tomorrow, but we all have today, this moment in time. Make the most of it, hold your loved ones, tell them how much you care. As Chris told viewers on his home television station WDBJ7 “It was the kind of love that I was so privileged and lucky to have that I need to share that with everyone, to tell people that even if it gets taken away from you, it exists.” I agree with you Chris, and I am sure many of my readers will as well.
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