Brothers & Friends Share Their Triumph Stories
With the launch of our first “KA Journal: Digital Connection” email companion to our fall 2011 edition of The Kappa Alpha Journal we’ve asked brothers to share their own personal stories of overcoming tragedy. In their words. Here is the first submission. Use this link to submit yours today.
Submitted Story #1
Cody Wade (Gamma Xi – Lamar)
August the 13th of 2010 was possibly the worst day of my life. What should have been a joyous occasion turned tragic within a blink of the eye. I had recently gotten engaged to the girl of my dreams 6 months earlier so you can imagine the long days and nights of sitting up planning every small detail to its finest sharpened feature. On top of this Trini (my fiancé) was just about to graduate from nursing school which I was happy and very thankful for. We had been living at our new house near Beaumont, TX for about 2 weeks. Trini left our house that afternoon to go to her graduation pinning ceremony. She came into the living room where I was taking a nap, getting my energy for the evening of well anticipated events. She gave me a kiss told me she loved me and went to garage got in her car and left. Little did I know it would be the last time I would ever talk with her or hear her say I love you lovey.
About an hour later, I woke up, took a shower, got dressed, got her some flowers and began to head to Houston for her ceremony. About 45 minutes into my travels I was detoured from highway 90 back to I-10; the Harris county sheriff’s department had the road blocked off so I took the detour thinking very little other than hoping everyone was alright. For some reason I felt the need to call Trini at this point and ask her if she made it there alright, we always had this unspoken rule with one another that if we were going somewhere without the other we always called an let the other we had made it there okay, and it just hit me I had not heard from her in almost 2 hours. As unusual as this was, I told myself that she was probably just excited and had her phone either off or not with her at the moment.
I arrived at the graduation excited for my “sweet pea” this being her pet name I had called her for more than 4 years now. I arrived at my seat to find her parents and siblings and my family and sister waiting, anticipating the start of the ceremony. I quickly took my seat and said my hello’s and I missed you’s. We sat there for a good bit of time before the ceremony started. Once the ceremony started all the students from Trini’s class started walking down the aisles from the back to the stage. We all were very puzzled; none of us could find Trini, you could see the look painted on all our faces.
It was not like her to not show up for something, especially something like this. I remember this detail all too well; her mother turned to me and said, “The accident?” I sprang from my chair and darted to the parking lot. My mother and father called for me to slow down and wait. I ran down the first row of cars, Trini’s car was not there. I checked the second row and the third and the fourth with nothing to show for my efforts. I started calling everyone I knew who lived by the accident site. I got a hold of my good friend Damon and he was able to tell us that all he knew was a nursing student was involved in the accident and that one of the people from the accident was being life flighted. I thought to myself, “O dear lord please no, Trini is hurt and she needs me I have to get to her.” So off we went to the hospital, my dad drove quickly but as carefully as he could drive his big F 250 power stroke thought the never ending Houston traffic.
We approached the hospital when dad’s phone began to ring. He answered it and immediately pulled over, which I found very unusual; my dad could talk and drive I had seen him do it a 100 times before. Why did he pull over this time, didn’t he know what kind of hurry we were in? My dad hung up his phone and took a long, deep breath. I thought I noticed him starting to tear up which I found puzzling; I had known my dad my whole life and I had never seen him cry. Oh my God I thought please no, and that’s when he said it. “Son, you know I love you and that’s why it kills me to tell you this but, that was mark (a friend of the family and my boss) and he just told me he knows for a fact that Trini did not make it out of the scene”. I said, “What are you saying dad?”, as I was completely taken off guard. “She died on impact of the crash”, he told me, trying to hold back his tears, trying to keep his calm that all gentlemen strive to maintain in times of trouble. I, on the other hand, refused to accept what he said, not thinking it was possible.
All of us who loved her knew what kind of nice, loving, pure woman she was. Why of all days would God take Trini from us now? I had a lot of trouble with this later in life until I realized that God did not put the alcohol into the guy that hit her. God did not choose to take her that day but rather it was an act of man. Men we cruel lumps of clay that must be formed into something useful or forever stand ideally by as a mound of dirt. The next few days felt like one long one between the lack of sleep, the tears, arranging a funeral, attending it, and not having my one true love in my life anymore. I felt like I may go insane. That is why I thank God every day for this organization. If it were not for the comforts of some of my brothers, in particularly my big brother, Eric Christenson, I promise you I would probably not be here today to write this story. When I say my prayers at night I end them with thank you for brotherhood because it saved my life dear lord.
I find it funny that I haven’t looked at this website in over 2 years and today I just so happen to find this on our website; God truly is amazing to me sometimes what he lays before us. I am literally sitting in a court house at the trial of the boy who killed my love, and I am having a rough time with it. Sharing this story is in some small way a comfort to me because if one person reads this and #1 does not drink and drive because of it or #2 calls some old brothers they haven’t talked to in awhile or had a petty argument with and keep up some communication with them and Trini’s legacy will live on through them. Maybe one day, if they have a tragedy, they will have someone who will save their life just as my big brother did. Eric, if you ever read this I hope you understand how much you and the brothers mean to me. I love you all very much and look forward to many more baseball parks with you guys.