Hours after Jamie Taylor ran for his touchdown, Trinity Gay didn’t even have time to run for her life.
And now here I sit in my apartment as the weekend comes to an end, the darkness lit only by a computer screen, trying to make sense of this emotion that’s swelling up inside me.
I think about my weekend and I feel the catch in my throat, my eyes trying to water enough for a tear or two to escape … but I refuse to let it.
Instead, i wonder what kind of world I have helped create. I question God and all that he has created,
I think back over the weekend and wonder how the hell I went from one extreme to the other. I try to sort out my feelings and emotions … but like life itself it’s all a jumble. Nothing makes sense anymore.
On a gorgeous Saturday afternoon I was given a tip while at a football game. Jamie Taylor was about to do something special on the football field.
Third down. Wait for it.
The play was called “Ice Cream” — named by Jamie himself.
I met Jamie a few years ago while covering the Brien McMahon High School football team in Norwalk, Conn. But I really I got to know him last year when I did a story on him being a member of the Senators’ varsity football team.
Jamie loves football. Eats it, sleeps it, just loves it. Division 1 scholarship winners in Florida and Texas and New Jersey have nothing on Jamie when it comes to a love for playing the game, that’s for sure.
Jamie has Down Syndrome and while he may not have been blessed with God-given talent to go the next level, he has the ability to embrace life and live it to the fullest.
So when his coach called out “Ice Cream” early in the second half, Jamie rushed out onto the field, ready for his moment in the spotlight.
He took the handoff and ran 60 yards for a touchdown.
There were smiles. There were tears. And there was Jamie embracing his coach and lifting him right off his feet into the air.
I even smiled as I watched all this play out through the lens of my camera and the first chance I got I slapped Jamie’s hand in congratulatory fashion.
For just a moment, everything in the world seemed blessed and right.
This morning, though, I woke up to the news out of Lexington, Ky.
Trinity Gay, the daughter of Team USA sprinter Tyson Gay — who if it wasn’t for Usain Bolt would be the fastest man in the world — was killed in a random shooting outside of a restaurant.
She was 15 years old.
Like her father, she was fast. So fast. Last year, as a freshman, she finished fourth in the 100-meter dash at Kentucky’s state championship meet.
That’s fast enough to outrun trouble if it tried to track her down, right?
It wasn’t fast enough to outrun a bullet.
Two cars started firing guns at each other outside a Cook Out restaurant in the wee hours of Sunday morning. And because of this latest senseless shooting in America, nobody will know what Trinity’s future would have held in store for her.
She wanted to be a doctor and an Olympian.
What else do we need to know?
“She was so innocent, she was so innocent,” Shoshana Boyd, Trinity’s mother, told the New York Daily News in a heart-breaking, tearful interview. “I just want people to stop shooting and realize who they’re hurting. It’s just random. They don’t understand, they don’t understand who they’re hurting. I should never have to bury my child.”
But the shootings won’t stop.
Neither will the confusion.
Jamie runs for a touchdown. Trinity will never run again.
I sit here and finally let that one tear run down my cheek because I know there is no answer out there.