On September 17th, 2018 my younger brother, Jason, came by our Mom’s house after being away for around two weeks.
See Jason had become a heavy drug user, he was shooting heroin into one arm and meth into the other. His addiction had driven him to steal mom’s car a few months earlier, after being out of jail for 4 days. When the cops caught up with him he was arrested, and while searching the car they found a rifle that he was trying to sell. His first stay in jail was for assaulting a police officer, second was for probation violation due to failure of a drug test. The assault of the police officer was a felony, which makes you ineligible to have in your possession a firearm in the state of Virginia. So when they found the rifle they took him to jail, and charged him with “Unauthorized use of a motor vehicle” and “Possession of a firearm by a violent felon”.
Jason was where Jason needed to be, behind steel bars and concrete walls. Those two things make it a lot harder to get your hands on drugs. My brother was one of the best people you could have met when he was clean, a great father, hard working, funny, just a good guy that you’d want to be around. When he was using though, he could piss off the Pope. He became paranoid, everyone was out to get him, to do him wrong in one way or the other. So he had pushed most everyone that cared for him away.
Anyhow, my family and I thought Jason would be safe because he was in jail, and facing a mandatory 5 – 10 year sentence. No more overdoses, no more Narcan prescriptions, no more wondering when the call would come that he was gone from this existence. Mom and Dad agreed and refused to post his bond this time. Before Jason had become a heavy user, when I say heavy user I mean he had jumped from pot and alcohol to heroin, meth and anything else he could get his hands on, he had worked for the city for close to 12 years. During those 12 years he had been contributing to a retirement plan and had money in it that he had never touched. If you’ve ever left a job with a retirement plan you know they send you occasional reminders that they still have your money and its growth or lose. So Jason was receiving mail at mom’s since he and his wife had separated. Jason was in jail and everything was going fine, until somebody posted his bond. Come to find out that on one of her trips to Mom’s for the kids to visit their Nana, his wife had went through his mail and found the statement from the investment firm that was holding his retirement money. So she goes to the jail and makes a deal, he would sign the paperwork to cash out his retirement, she would use it to post his bond and give him a share of it, but she got the majority of it because “She was taking care of the kids”. He agreed and showed back up on Mom’s doorstep needing a place to live, but this time he had money in his pocket, so he didn’t have to steal mom’s car. See, junkies would walk through fire, barefoot for that next fix. So all he had to do was make a call or two and he was back up with his old crew, and had a needle in his arm before midnight. He would come to Mom’s to eat and sleep but he was staying high and kept falling deeper and deeper into this hole that addiction leaves you in. The hole where after you run out of money all of your “friends” seem to turn into smoke and don’t give a shit about you.
On September 17th, 2018 my younger brother, Jason, came by our Mom’s house after being away for around two weeks. He had called her from downtown and she went and picked him up and brought him to her house. When he got there he text our Dad and started a fight with him, grabbed a bite to eat, and asked Mom to take him back downtown. Mom had been drinking and told him, No! Jason walked out on Mom’s front porch, Mom asked her husband if he would take him and he said yes. Mom started walking toward the front door to tell him, he was standing outside of the door looking at Mom through the glass, raised our Grandfather’s pistol to his temple and pulled the trigger. He died a few minutes later with my Mom holding his head begging him to breath. When the EMS arrived they pronounced him DOA. Where this was a firearm involved death the police had to come and swab Mom and her husband’s hands for gunshot residue. While all of this was happening, which took around 4 hours to finish their investigation, my dead brother laid on the porch of my devastated Mom, while she sat in her kitchen making phone calls to family letting us know that Jason was dead.
This has been one of the hardest things in my life that I have had to deal with. I hadn’t talked to Jason in about 6 months. He made sure to tell me how much he hated me and to stay out of his fucking life before we stopped talking. I knew it was the drugs talking, but I granted his wish this time since it only took 4 days for him to be back in jail, and knowing he was going away for a longer stretch this time, I thought I would patch things up again once he was in and clean.
We put him to rest 9/24/18, which was two days ago, and although I wasn’t there I keep imagining him looking up at my mom with a pistol to his head and him pulling the trigger, and then the horror on my Mom’s face as he falls in front of the door. The pain is fucking raw still, the hurt I see in her and my Dad’s eyes doesn’t seem like it will ever go away. I won’t even go into the hurt it has caused his children, but it has torn a piece of me away, and caused so many that his life had touched pain. I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy. Suicide may end your pain, and break you free from the demons that have their claws in you, but it causes so much more pain to those that love and care for you. Find help, scream from the top of your lungs that you need it if you have to, but please find help, somebody cares.