April 2000 April was the month we remember when our families gathered for the boys confirmation ceremony. We especially remember the happiness on the occasion of April '98 for Stephen's and the great day we had. I can recall with affection the meal we had afterwards and the laughter around the dinner table. Gary loved the chat, the friendly jeering of each football team, Gary gave as good as he got. He would also make us laugh with his jokes so simple and funny. I remember Stephen wanting to buy with the money he got on that day a" Play station" (I might add he had just got an electric guitar two weeks previously for this same occasion). Gary said to go ahead and buy it. He knew how much his brother wanted it. The Play station was bought and how I am glad that it was. Gary was always willing to take a back seat and unselfishly let others receive what they wanted before him.
The month is also remembered for the end of the football leagues and the how each team was doing at the end of the season. His love of football was greatest and we shall always picture him "flicking" through the text on the t.v keeping up with the latest scores and watching all matches on Sky tv. His team was Liverpool F.C, he also had a love for Spurs and followed each team with a passion.
As we look at our children grow up we tend to take a lot of the wonderful things for granted. How I wish I could have captured Gary's fourteen years on tape to play over and over. But a lot of memories must rewind inside our head. The fun, the laughter, the love, the magic that made Gary the precious boy we knew. They will one day be happy memories for us but for now they are difficult and soul destroying. Reminding us clearly what we lost the day Gary passed on. Gary we miss you dearly and we shall never ever forget your special ways.
April 2001It's the start of a new month. I sit here at Gary's computer and I have thought of life in general over the past week because of something which happened to us. A neighbor of ours who shall we say has a certain dislike for our family reminded us of the life "ordinary folk" continue to live. When Gary died we had to adopt to what we refer to our " New Life " a life without our precious Gary. Our eyes were re-opened by this neighbor to the harsh and cold reality of life a reminder to us that Gary's passing for them was just a headline in a newspaper, a conversation piece for a while, something you'll get over. The game some neighbors play with each other was acceptable when Gary lived amongst us, we were happy to oblige whoever crossed our paths.
When Gary died life took on a whole new meaning and it would take a person far more articulate person than I to explain. For 99.99% of those who live around us life has not changed at all, that is shown by the lack of feeling, the lack of any friendliness or in any way trying to understanding the pain and the suffering that comes with the loss of a child. Yes we were very upset and it caused great pain to know that a person who have known us so long and knew Gary all his life could even now be the way they are. But how could they possibly know what its all about. I was never tempted to enter "the game of conflict", Gary's memory is more precious than that and besides it would wipe out all we have learned over the past two years.
Last year I was desperate to make sure everything I could remember of Gary was written down or the photos were put up safely or all Gary ever owned was kept safe, I was afraid his memory would fade but I know that shall never happen. Every place we go Gary follows. So Gary we thank you for all you have given us and we shall always remember you but we miss you so much.
Take care and thanks to all for looking at our site. Regards from Brendan, Christine and Family.
April 2002 Today Saturday 6th April I have just come back from our cemetery. A large group of Traveller's were gathered in the car park as they tore out displaying aggressive driving and reckless disregard to our feelings it annoyed me a lot. I just felt invaded by a group from hell sent to torment us. How I wished Gary did not have to be a part of "there" but sadly he is. It has now become just a place I go to keep tidy and as I stand in front of Gary's headstone its sometimes still hard to believe he has gone from us. In Spirit he is always here but this afternoon thats not enough.
Also this week our nation has been rocked by The Child Sex Abuse committed by priests who had served amongst us and although not something some people wish to talk about it's necessary for us all to deal with it and to try to make our world a little less evil. Gary died aged fourteen a lot of the boys that were abused by priests were of that age. I am glad Gary did not come into contact ever with what has happened to these boys and I would feel such anger especially toward the Catholic Church who for so long covered us a trail of abuse. Boys who are now men and who must live their life with such a damaged childhood I hope all shall be ok for them. We can be happy Gary never witnessed any of that. I wish all those who came forward in such a public way and especially those who now live amongst us in our town all the very best for their future and I hope they can eventually heal and live a " normal " life once again.
My last thought for this month is shortly I shall be unemployed. The place I worked for ten years shall close with the loss of 364 jobs. But Gary's passing shall help me deal with this I know it's very trivial compared with Gary's passing and we shall come through no problem. No longer wil I have to look at the telephone where I got the phone call from Gary's mom Christine to tell me what happened to Gary and to get home. A telephone call which changed our whole world forever. The associations I have with work are all too memorable of the time when Gary died. I look on this time as the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.
To all faced with the loss of their precious children I only wish life is not too difficult for you as you also learn to live once again take care and all our love from Brendan and Christine.