from the candlelight vigil tonight, taken by my friend Lauren
What do you even say in the worst of times? I'm sure many of you have read about the tragedy that took place in our tiny town this weekend. We lost 19 of our Hot Shot firefighters in a wildfire that overtook another small town nearby. And when you live in such a small place, everyone is connected and affected by a loss like this. We all lost neighbors and friends, husbands, sons and brothers.
It's hard to even know how to put something like this into words. I think about our sweet Andrew, a husband, a father of four, and it's difficult to make sense of a situation like this. He was one of Hank's best friends, our roommate before we got married, and one of my most favorite people in the entire world. Hank grew up with him, and later he was Hank's band's roadie, touring all across the country in that old van, all of the guys together. They were brothers. And to try and wrap my head around the fact that he is just gone, that I'll never hear him yelling "DIIIINOOO!" from across the room, that contagious smile lighting up every corner of every place he's in, is impossible and painful and so very numbing.
I hesitated to share anything about this here, because everything I type just sounds wrong. I've tried and I've tried but no matter how many times I type and delete, type and delete, I just can't seem to get the words right- find the right thing to say to express how I'm feeling, because in reality the loss of Andrew to us is nothing compared to the loss that his wife and family is feeling right now. My heart is so heavy thinking of their grief.
All 19 men gave their life protecting others', and they will forever be remembered as heroes. Our town was lucky to have these men as our own, and they will never be forgotten.
Hug your loved ones a little tighter tonight, and please send all of your thoughts of strength and peace to the families of these brave men.