Co-Founder: Bridget’s Story
I can’t sugar coat this because there is simply nothing good about my story. I can change the wording to seem less gruesome but the underlying matter is that on May 12, 2007 my life changed forever and there is not a single thing I can do about it. The only positive thing about this story is that it motivated me to cofound this company that I hope helps a large number of people in the future.
Friday nights in the spring meant middle school track meets and if you ask my mom, to this day, she would tell you, “it was truly dreadful to watch her try and run.” At this particular track meet I did not get to have my cell phone because I was grounded from it for sending a text message with bad words. When I got home later that night I crept into my mom’s bedroom to check and see if any of my friends had texted me. The only notifications I had were a missed call and voicemail from my brother Shawn.
The voicemail said, “Hey Bridget! Just checking in. Wanted to come over tonight but I called the house it doesn’t seem like anyone is home. Give me a call back when you get the chance. Love you!”
I have two older brothers and they didn’t live with me much in middle school or high school; because they were significantly older. Just as I was about to call Shawn back, but my mom caught me in the act. After taking the phone away again and telling me that I could call him back in the morning I headed for bed and was upset that I did not get the chance to call my brother but fell asleep at ease because I would get to call him the next day.
I thought to myself, “What was the harm in waiting a few more hours?”
Life tip: never wait for anything.
Around 3 A.M. the phone rang at our house, but no one answered. Time after time the phone continued to ring but everyone was fast asleep. My dad worked nights at this time so it was just my mom, my best friend Morgan and myself. At around 4 A.M. the doorbell rang, it was a detective. I stayed in bed and listened while my mom went and answered the door and invited him in.
To be completely honest I didn’t think much of the fact that he was there. It was not the first time that a police officer had come to our house on account of at least one if not both of my brothers (Love you Ryan).
I couldn’t lay still as I got up and peaked out my bedroom door. I watched the police officer guide my mom to the couch and had her sit down. With in 60 seconds my mom went from tired and disoriented to wide-awake and hysterical. The sound of my mom’s screams is something that will stick in my mind for as long as I live.
I hurried out of my room to see what was going on and asked my mom what was wrong. She told me nothing was wrong, that Shawn just got hurt at work and that I should go back in my room and go to bed. Shaking off her words, I refused to listen because I had an eerie feeling that she was lying to me. Tears instantly started falling from my face and I had no idea why. I’m not a crier and never have been, but seeing the way my mom was reacting triggered something in me and I couldn’t help but be scared and sad with her.
Within the half hour people started showing up at my house. My uncles both showed up and the detective took them outside to explain the situation. Since my dad was working; people were discussing who was going to go pick him up from work. I was so confused.
“If Shawn was supposedly just hurt why was this all such a big deal? Why wouldn’t any tell me what was really going on?” I thought to myself.
I was sitting in the kitchen alone for a while staring at people, trying to listen and get clues of what was actually going on. My mom walked in after awhile, knelt down on the floor in front of me and said the worst combination of words that anyone could ever tell me.
Tears streaming down her face, “Shawn was killed last night. I’m sorry honey,” she said through sobs. I burst into tears and started yelling at her, telling her she was a liar. I couldn’t control myself. I wanted to leave the room so bad but I was in so much shock that if I tried to stand up I would have collapsed. Questions and hateful thoughts ran threw my head as I sat there in my kitchen helpless.
People flocked to my house that day. There was nowhere to park for blocks. Family, friends and even people I had never met showed up to extend a hand in our time of grief. I did not talk to many of them. I remember sitting in front of the living room window for hours just staring at people. Everyone that looked at me would either start crying or tearing up and give me a hug. People kept coming up to me and expressing how sorry they were but I was distant and unresponsive because their words weren’t going to bring back my brother.
Sitting in the chair, I listened to his voicemail over and over again.
“Hey Bridget! Just checking in. Wanted to come over tonight but I called the house it doesn’t seem like anyone is home. Give me a call back when you get the chance. Love you!”
I couldn’t stop. Sure it made me sad, but I was numb and it was the only thing that made me feel anything. Unfortunately, someone that tried to listen to it accidentally deleted the voicemail and I never got to hear my brothers voice again.