On Sunday morning, my sister called to tell me that a friend of ours had died the evening before. We didn't have details until later in the day, that Gwen had had a head-on collision with a semi truck. She was only thirty.
We had known her since she was twelve. I listened and gave her advice when she started having more conflict in life. I wiped away tears from her cheek, stroked her long brown, straight hair, and hugged her countless times.
She was brave and assured when she came out. She always smiled. She was, despite her drug use and drinking, a good girl. A very sweet, loving good girl.
She had gotten clean. She got serious about fixing her life. And she had aspirations of becoming a nurse.
I don't know what happened to cause her to go over the median and drive into oncoming traffic that night. I don't know if she had partied or simply gotten tired. We just hope she didn't feel the horrible rip from life's form.
I hate that I hadn't spoken to her in years. I hate that her mother and father and brother have this new pain. And I hate that she is gone.
You were and always will be loved, Gwen.