Her name was Allison. She was 15. She died the summer before our sophomore year.
I missed her funeral. I didn't even know that she had died until the services were over. My friends left the news on our home answering machine. These were the days before cell phones, and we had been out of town for a few weeks.
I have found myself thinking of her so often since Owen's death.
I'm not going to exaggerate how close we were back then. We were friends, not best friends, but friends all the same. Teenage girls with some things in common, girls who hung out and talked about boys and first kisses. I had just moved to a different state when she died. She was one of the only people who wrote me after I moved. I kept her letters.
In the months after she died, I couldn't wrap my head around the fact that she was gone. My life was drastically different anyways- living a few states away from the aftermath, and I'm sure I didn't feel the hole as acutely as our other friends did.
I want to call her parents and tell them I still remember her. I want to tell them everything I remember about her. Her laugh, her intimidating intelligence, the time she told me that dating an older guy didn't mean she was going to have sex with him...I remember that conversation very clearly. We were standing on the front lawn of our church, the sun was going down and we were taking a break from the dinner the youth group had put on. She seemed so much older than I was. I looked up to her in a lot of ways. I was shy, but she was never afraid to voice her opinion.
I want to call her parents and tell them that their beloved daughter is important and remembered. Her life was special and invaluable.
You're probably wondering where this post came from... I'll admit that I check my sitemeter occasionally and tonight (rather early this morning) I saw that someone from Allison's hometown visited here yesterday. And one of the few people that came to mind when I saw the town listed was Allison. I want to tell her parents that too.