Saturday, November 12, 2011

January 8, 2011

Saturday . . . only a couple hours of sleep . . . very exhausted and anxious about today.

We get up and I have a few bites of breakfast.  It’s still difficult for me to eat. 

We have to be in Woodbury just before a.m. and meet the officer at the church across from the development where the home is.  We load the plant with the tractor and another one she didn’t even ask for but it was addressed to “Girlfriend and Beissel Family” so I figure I will just give it to her.

We go over to meet the Neighbors and hook up their trailer to the Tahoe.  We wait for my sons to arrive with the trailer to haul Alex’s truck.  When they arrive we all leave and start out down the road.  My phone rings and I do not recognize the number.  Mr. Neighbor says it might be the police so I should answer it . . . so I do.  It’s a police officer.  He says we can just meet him at the home and that they have allowed all of us onto the property to load everything.

We get there and see three police officers at the property.  We back in and start loading everything.  The girlfriends family just threw everything into a big pile in the garage.  I cannot believe how rude they are being.

I give the plants to the officer to take in and explain to him that there were none of the cards she asked for and none that we had received were addressed to her.

I am crying about what I see and very hurt and confused as to why they are treating us like outcasts???  I don’t understand???  The officers tell us that the mattress and box spring are in the house so we can go in and get them.  I’m not sure who did but somene went in with Jeff to get them.  I was then asked about the keys which I had with me.  I was asked to go inside as it was cold out to go through the keys with the girlfriends’ grandfather.  There were at least two police officers there with us. 

As we were going through the keys the girlfriends mother came up to me to tell me that they took Alex’s combination safe to a locksmith to have opened because the girlfriends’ passport and some other things were in the safe. 

I couldn’t believe what I was hearing!  I turned and looked at her and said, “You did what?”  She said it was someone at Harley Davidson and that the safe was probably still there but it would be destroyed as it was no longer usable.   I said, “You had no right!”  And her grandfather said, “Well, you didn’t have the combination did you?”  The mother then says well we wouldn’t lie to you!  I began to cry and crouched down on the floor.  I said,  "I’m not calling you a liar, but you had no right to take my son’s safe, MY SON’s safe and have it open or destroyed without my permission!"  The mother then looks at me and rudely says, “Well, you didn’t include my daughter in any of the funeral arrangements.”  I looked at her and said, "They were not married and definitely NOT engaged!!" And then I walked out.  I threw the remaining keys on the floor of the garage and just sobbed.  I was so angry and distraught.  How dare they do what they did!!

A little while later one of the officers came out to give me Alex’s computer which was released.  I signed for it and it was given to me. 

A moment later another officer came out so see if any of us would like to go in and see where Alex died.  No one did but me.  I had to see where my youngest child died and say a prayer.  Mr. Neighbor did go in with me.  The officer asked the girlfriends family to be in the far corner of the dining room and allow us to do so.

I did notice that the bathroom was not gutted completely to the studs as was told to me by the girlfriends family except for about the bottom 2 feet from the floor.  The tub, toilet, sink and cabinet were gone and part of the subfloor.  The carpeting on the stairs and part of the hallway were also removed.  I did thank them for allowing me to say a prayer where my son died as I walked out.  

We then got ready to leave after everything was loaded.  We however didn’t know if we had everything.  The police officer said to get in touch with him if we did not receive everything.  I shook all the officers’ hands and thanked them for their help and then we left. 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

January 7, 2011

Friday . . . it’s about   My eyes are heavy but I still have not slept.  I say some prayers and drift into a half asleep state.   Suddenly I have a vision  . . . I see the figure of what looks like Alex about 20 feet or so from me.  I do not recognize where I am but I look and I say, “Alex, is that you, Alex?”  The silhouetted figure is looking directly at me and suddenly becomes bright as light and I can barely see dots where his eyes, nose and mouth would be.  He realizes that I cannot recognize him and dims his energy and I see my son.  It’s Alex!  The next thing I know we are holding each other and I say, "I love you!" and he says. "I love you" back.  I hold his face in my hands and I ask, “What’s it like?”   He looks at me with such love, honesty and amazement.  He smiles and says, “It’s beautiful!”  We hug again and I ask him, “What happened?”  He mumbles something.  I cannot understand what he says and I ask him to repeat it.  This time I turn my face to try and read his lips as he speaks.  I only hear mumbling once again and ask him to repeat it once more.  He says he has to go and begins to move away and goes down some stairs.  I’m trying to hold on to him . . . I don’t want to let go.  I say to him, "don’t go, don’t go, I love you!"  And then he’s gone. 

I wake up talking in my sleep and wake Jeff and tell him that Alex has finally appeared to me.  I am so grateful for this that I cry while Jeff holds me.   I will always treasure this moment and yearn for more.

I have trouble eating breakfast . . . again, with my thoughts of, “if Alex can’t eat why am I?”   Jeff reminds me that I have 3 other children who love me and that I need to keep up my strength for all the family and friends still here.  I try to eat a little knowing he’s right.

The rest of the day I slowly worked on a few more thank you cards.  So much crying.

The girlfriend sends me a text message:

“Hey, kevin, its [girlfriend]. I was just wanting you to bring a flower arrangement/plant (the john deer with tracker in it from duffs bar) that was meant for me,bring tomorrow along with a few cards that were meant for me at the wake. Thank would be great thank you.”

I send her a message back:

“Which cards?” 
(I had not seen any cards for her in what we received but I did notice some of our cards missing.)

Her text back:

"From my boss and wellsfargo, and marcus, and miller (zetwicks)"

I text her again:

“Who is your boss?”

Her text reply:

“Barb bob taylor Dalton are all going to be in the card or cards from my boss, my aunt kim and rodger, andy and lindsney are from wellsfargo!”

I do not send another response.  I go through every card and plant more than three times.  There is nothing from any of the people she has asked about but I know she will not believe me no matter what.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

January 5, 2011

Wednesday . . . no sleep but maybe an hour or two. 

It’s time to get his personal affects from the Medical Examiners.  I called and made the appointment for .

Jeff drove me.  I walked in feeling shaky and nauseous.  They would not give me his clothes as they are blood stained and felt it would be too traumatic.  I just got what was in his pockets and any jewelry he was wearing.  Those things too are somewhat blood stained. 

I called Alex's mother to let her know I have picked up his things.  I hugged the envelopes as we drove home.  It’s weird - holding onto some things that were the last things close to his body as he took his last breath of life.  My poor dear child . . . gone from earth so young.  My future with him in it and all it contained are no longer possible.  A part of me and my life are now missing forever.  

When I got home I opened the envelopes to see what was in them.  His wallet and all the papers it contained, blood stained.  His knife, keys, license, his mother's credit card which he used to buy a leather Harley coat and never paid her back for, receipts, etc.  His ear gages also in the envelope . . . it would have been nice to have had them before his wake and funeral.  Seeing those bloodied items was very heart-wrenching knowing it was my son’s life drained from his body. 

I could look no more so I put it all away.

The kids all came over in the afternoon.  I now had to somehow get my son’s belongings home to go through it all.  I need to do this to have closure.  I don’t know how I can do this all by myself so my daughter offers to contact the girlfriend and her family to set up a time to do it.  One less thing for me to think about for which I’m very thankful.

The rest of the day was fairly quiet.  I just needed to get addresses and go through all the cards and start writing thank you notes. 

January 6, 2011

The girlfriend tells my daughter her grandparents won’t let her in the place so she’ll have to ask them.  My daughter calls the grandmother and she says she’ll have to think about it and get back to her.  She sends my daughter a message on facebook telling her she will only work with me on this not anyone else:

"[to Alex's sister], with all due respect, and after giving it much thought I have decided to make my communications through Kevin." 

The grandmother also sent me a message on facebook:

"I am sure you know that [your daughter] contacted me today. I did leave her a message telling her that all of my contacts will be through you and you alone.

With all due respect we are not allowing anyone into that property other than you as Alex's father. I totally understand that you need some closure, however with all due repect to [her granddaughter], that townhouse is her's and her's alone as the only name on the rental agreement.

Everything will be available to you as of Saturday morning. The insurance adjuster and the contractor are coming at 3:00 P.M. on Friday.

I am a regular user of facebook so please feel free to contact me here or on my phone.

I don’t understand what the hell is going on?  My son paid rent to them to live there and now they do not want to allow us in to get Alex’s things?  Have they no compassion?  I decide to go to the Woodbury police and ask for help.  I talk with an Officer about the situation.  He is aware of the investigation and will facilitate getting Alex’s things. 

He calls the girlfriend and she starts ranting about how she’s not allowed in the property and he’ll have to talk to her grandparents since they are the property owners.  He hangs up and comments that "she’s a piece of work."  He calls the grandmother and there is no answer.  A few minutes later he gets a message to call her at another number.  He says not to say anything so the grandmother doesn’t know we are there.  He explains the situation and gets the grandmother to agree to allow me to pick things up on Saturday, January 8th at .  They will only allow me into the garage where they will put everything.  He hangs up and makes a comment about the grandmother having a "god complex."  I explain to the officer that I cannot do this all by myself and will need help from my family.  I also asked how will I know I have everything if they don’t allow me into the home to verify this?  He understands and will see what he can do but as property owners they do not have to allow us in the home.  So now we are set for Saturday.   I call the neighbor's and ask for their help with their trailer but they have to use their Tahoe because I don’t have a hitch.  They are more than happy to help.

My stomach is in knots the rest of the day.  I cannot fathom that this is really happening.  By law I am now the owner of all of Alex’s things and yet they don’t have to let me in to get them.  This makes no sense!!  I try to get my mind off of this by writing some thank you cards.

I have a very hard time eating.  I can only think, my son has not eaten for six days, why am I eating and I begin to cry.   I’m exhausted so I go to bed early and just lay there . . . I cannot sleep.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

January 4, 2011

Tuesday . . . still no sleep.  Today I have to bury my son’s body.  The whole day seems surreal.  It’s almost like some bad nightmare . . . but it’s really happening.  How do I say goodbye forever to my son, my youngest child? 

We get to the church early as we have one hour of visitation prior to the service.  I walk in and see Alex layed out and walk up to him and put my letter under his hands.  Adam asks me to do the same for him and I do. 

Again, so many people, Alex was so loved and no one can believe what happened. 

The girlfriend arrives with her mother and grandmother.  She’s wearing sweatpants and a t-shirt saying something about her “Butthead” and Alex’s initials.  Her mother is also in sweatpants and her grandmother is in leather pants.  She asked if she could walk up with the procession of family and I told her it was fine.  However, she must have chosen not to and went up into the church ahead of time. 

It was now time for the service.  The family looked one last time upon Alex’s face and went to get in line.  I remained behind with my son.  I just couldn’t let them close the lid without me or let him ride up the elevator to the main level alone.  I needed to be with my baby to the end. 

It was a beautiful service.  Father Stan gave a wonderful sermon and after communion Adam read my letter to Alex and then gave an absolutely beautiful eulogy . . . there were very few dry eyes in the church. 

When service was over we took Alex to his grave and said some prayers.  I stayed to watch them lower the casket into the ground.  I was not about to leave until everyone was out of the cemetery.  I needed to be the last. 

We got to the church basement for the meal and Alex’s mother barely got to sit down when the girlfriend and her family came over and asked for their flowers.  Alex’s mother didn’t know which ones and said, “You need to show me which ones”.  I sent Aaron to follow.  The girlfriend also wanted to know where the one with the John Deere tractor was because it was meant for her -  the card read “Girlfriend and Beissel Family”.  There were so many flowers that I instructed the funeral home to bring only immediate family flowers and the girlfriend’s families as I suspected they would want them.  The rest were to be delivered to the house after the funeral and I never told Alex’s mother this.  Well, the girlfriend wanted to know where the plant was with the John Deere tractor and Alex’s mother didn’t know and told her this.  The girlfriend told her to find out and let her know.  Then as soon as they had their flowers they left.

I later found out from the funeral director that the girlfriend wanted him to open the locked card box and give her all the cards meant for her.  He of course told her he couldn’t do that and that she would have to ask the family for them which he said upset her and her family.  He told her it was strict guidelines that cards go to the family only.   

There was plenty of food left over so I invited all of Alex’s mother’s family to the house for supper.  I needed to hear some great stories of Alex.  They all came and we ate and talked.  Even I finally ate today . . . my baby was now laid to rest.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

January 3, 2011

Monday.  I still can’t sleep . . . my son is dead.  What the hell happened?  I call the coroner because I want to know where Alex was shot.  I’m told he would have died immediately and not suffered.

I went to the kitchen and remember looking out the window and then I couldn’t move.  I simply fell to the floor.  I don’t remember hitting the floor so I think Adam and Aaron caught me.  I’m not really sure.  I remember tears running down my face . . . that’s all.

We had our appointment with the priest to talk about the funeral.  He had met with the Neighbor’s earlier to learn about Alex and his family.  He also knew that the circumstances around Alex’s death were suspicious and that a mass for suicide didn’t seem appropriate so he would do one for someone who died tragically.  We all agreed.

After the meeting with the priest we went home and didn’t really do anything but wait until it was time for the wake.  Adam asked if he could put a letter to Alex in his casket with him and I said of course, I was as well.  We were all to meet at the funeral home by so we could see Alex as a family before open to the public at .  I had invited the Neighbor’s as family to be there with us.

At about we were all finally there and we were taken in to see Alex.  I walked into the room and lost it about 25 feet from him and then walked up to the casket holding my son’s body --- “it’s only a shell” I repeated over to myself several times while I stood there seeing my baby in his physical form without life or spirit in it.  It’s odd, but to me it didn’t seem like him.  Alex was so full of life and energy and now, nothing.  It seemed impossible. 

There were many flowers and plants.  The priest came in and said some prayers with the family. 

The girlfriend arrived and wanted to come in right away as we were already inside.  The funeral director didn’t let her in without checking with us and brought her picture board with to see if we wanted it put up.  The only photos she put in this frame were of her and Alex.  There were 12 to 16 pictures . . . she was in them all with Alex and no one else.  If I hadn’t brought Alex’s photo board from his graduation party and my son's best friend/brother hadn’t put a photo book together there would have been nothing but hers, which would have left the entire family out.  I was in disbelief but expected nothing less of her at this point.  Once the family was ready I had the funeral director let the girlfriend and her mother in.  They walked up to the casket and her mother put her hand on the girlfriends shoulder and her daughter shoved her away and said, “Don’t touch me!”  My family was afraid she would make a scene so I walked up behind the girlfriend and said take the time you need.  She also put two photos of her and Alex with the single yellow rose from her.   

People started coming in and the girlfriend took the first place in line along with her mother --- not surprising.  There were so many people . . . a wonderful testament to Alex for the person he was, loved by all he met in his too short of life. 

At one point the girlfriend was talking to my brother, my sister came up to talk to him and the girlfriend asked who she was.  My brother told her it was his sister, Alex’s aunt.  My son's girlfriend then introduced herself as “Alex’s fiancĂ© 40 minutes before he died.”

My niece offered to put a picture DVD together to show at the wake.  She and her sister came by on Saturday, January 1st, to get some photos from our album of Alex as a child.  It was a beautiful tribute.

Later, the girlfriend came up to me and told me that when she can she will go through Alex’s things and let me know when I can get them.  That was it . . . I had had enough.  I told her that I would like to come and get everything by the end of the week.  I as Alex’s father needed to finish taking care of his things and get closure and let Alex be at peace.  I was not going to wait a month or more.  She said that she wasn’t even allowed in the place yet so didn’t know how I could even get in.  Well, that morning my son's mother had spoken to a detective and found out that the girlfriends vehicle was not taken by the police and that no one was restricted from the home.  It was released right after the initial findings the 31st.  It was the girlfriends mother and grandparents who weren’t allowing her in.  I flat out told her that it was a lie that anyone was restricted.  I didn’t say how I knew but only that I did. 

Mr. Neighbor saw that I was getting upset and came over to keep me calm and tried to explain to my son's girlfriend that I had to get closure as soon as I could so Alex could be at peace.  She then told me how unfair it was that she wasn’t in any pictures or the DVD.  I looked at her and said I didn’t put them together and that she was in every picture she brought.  I hadn’t seen the DVD until it was played at the wake.  Mrs. Neighbor come over to me and asked me to go downstairs and I did . . . very upset.

I couldn’t believe how my deceased son's girlfriend and her family were making this all about them.  She had asked all her friends to give cards directly to her and not put them in the bin.  For all I know she probably took some that were meant for us. 

Alex's girlfriend came up behind me later when I was standing by Alex and started talking about how he looked and touched his head.  She then looks at me and says, “Oh, I think I just saw it.”  Meaning, where he had been shot.  I didn’t say anything.  I just looked at her in disbelief.  She then asked to have the two photos of her and Alex put in his casket.  She had written to her “Butthead” on the back of one of them.

It was at the end of the visitation and my family would not leave until the girlfriend and her family were gone.  Then I heard how the girlfriend, her mother and her grandmother had cornered Alex's mother earlier in the evening, how the girlfriend kept telling people that her and Alex were engaged 40 minutes before he died.  She and her family had made it about them.  She had even told my brother that she had even handed Alex his gun that night when he asked where it was. 

I hadn’t heard anything from anyone about him asking for his gun that tragic night.  I couldn’t understand what was going on?!  You see things like this in movies but this was real life . . . this was really happening.  It was all very surreal.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

January 2, 2011

It's Sunday. I couldn't sleep but just stayed in bed. I desperately wanted to sleep hoping I would see Alexander in a vision but to no avail. Jeff got up to get ready for church so I got up too, totally drained physically and emotionally. I barely remember showering and getting dressed. The next thing I know I'm lying on the closet floor and Jeff is there asking if I'm alright and very shaken. I can't stop crying and I desperately want my son back - I would gladly switch places with Alex if I only could. Jeff goes to get my son, Adam, and they help me to the bed. All I can do is lay there and cry. Adam stays there with me and rubs my back trying to comfort me. Here I am, his father, lying there like a child. He calls his brother, Aaron, to see when he's coming over. When he arrives he comes to my room. They both make sure I'm alright and tell me I need to eat something. We go downstairs and I have coffee and a piece of left over egg bake and a huge vitamin that Adam and his wife want me to take.

This evening is my family's Christmas . . . it was postponed because Mom got the flu the week before. I don't feel up to going and have decided the stay home.

My son's girlfriend calls and says she has Alex's clothes but can't find his dress shoes so has his work boots or tennis shoes and a few other things we might want to display at the wake. She told me her mom went in the home with her grandparents but wasn't supposed to be there but she told her mom where to look for stuff. Her mom then gets on the phone and gives me directions to her home and says I can pick up Alex's things there. I tell her we'll be there in the afternoon after Jeff gets back from church. I call the funeral home to make sure someone will be there when we drop Alex's clothes off.

When we get to the girlfriends mothers house they let us in the entry to get Alex's things. Her mother then proceeds to tell me about the engagement again and then my son's girlfriend takes out her cell phone and shows me a picture of the rings "they had all but picked up". Now, if I can't afford the rings she shows me, how could Alex? I say nothing but politely say, "Ohhh". The picture she showed me looked like she snapped a photo out of a catalog or it was a picture from the web on her cell phone - it was nothing more.

Again, her mother says how worried she is about her daughter - she hasn't showered or slept or changed clothes since Alex died. She then tells me she's going first thing in the morning to get the things from the police. I'm thinking to myself, you have no right to get any of Alex's things, but I just say, "OK". She tells me Alex pretty much bled out and that the whole bathroom had to be gutted out to the studs . . . the BCA took everything.

My son's girlfriend asks if she can read something she wrote at the funeral and I just say it would need to be approved by the priest.

His girlfriend said she would be coming to our family Christmas even though Alex couldn't make it. She felt she should be there for the both of them. She had an appointment to get her tattoo that afternoon first and then would go the the family Christmas. She helped carry Alex's things out to the truck, we hugged and said see you later and I told her to shower and she would feel better.

Jeff and I dropped the things off at the funeral home. I called my son's mother to tell her what the girlfriends' mother had said about getting the things from the police and she gets angry. I give her the name of a police officer and phone number so she can call.

Well, I didn't plan on going to the family Christmas but I did just to hear my son's girlfriend's story again . . . she never showed up. My son's mother calls and says she may be late for the appointment with the priest in the morning because she is going to be at the police station before the girlfriend's mother.