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RIP my only son

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Old 01-26-2011, 04:42 PM   #1
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RIP my only son

I am starting this thread because a thoughtful member here took the time to create a beautiful memorial picture of my son in his Firebird right after it was finished.

He didn't want to start the thread itself, because he was waiting for me to do it.

My son Alex was the central figure in the thread:
https://www.thirdgen.org/forums/hist...ather-son.html

You'll never know how happy I am not only that I had that experience with him, but also that I decided to post the thread. Now I have even more lasting memories of my wonderful son.

He was gunned down by a friend who had mistakenly held a grudge against him for something that it has been proven he did not do. He was lured to a meeting, where he left his car and traveled to the site of his murder with his killer, who had pretended to arrange a target shooting date at a remote location.

Alex was about as stand-up a guy as you could want to know, and yet I was overwhelmed with wave after wave of personal stories from kids his age who privately stated their gratitude for the unselfish acts of kindness he was apparently known for doing for and with his friends.

He had earned a full scholarship to VMI, and was awaiting final word from West Point, which he ultimately would have chosen.

At their own suggestion, West Point is sending an honor guard of cadets to serve as his pall bearers, he will be given a full military funeral, sworn in by proxy (his uncle, Lt. Col. Christopher Ernandes will speak for him) as a West Point plebe, and buried in his cadet uniform.

He was universally liked by all who knew him, and I can't count the number of people who have privately told me of his great character and unselfish deeds.

Thanks to TGO for allowing people to be memorialized here. As a result of my son's fascination with his beloved Firebird, which was recovered unharmed, I now have my GTA and his original Firebird, "Nellie". I will never sell any of these cars at any price.

Thanks for letting a grieving father ramble. You just can't know how important this is to me.
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Old 01-26-2011, 05:08 PM   #2
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Re: RIP my only son

Here is the Memorial picture for Alex
Name:  inlovingmem2.jpg
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your father son thread is what really made me decide to work with my dad on restoring my thirdgen, You and your family will remain in my family's Prayers,

I would also love to do a memorial cruise one day in the near future, but my Camaros body work will not be done until mid to late summer if im lucky

God bless Tim

~Ron~
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:28 PM   #3
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Re: RIP my only son

My condolences...and May God Bless
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:35 PM   #4
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Re: RIP my only son

my heart aches for you. I surprised my son with a 95Z which he spent many hours with me under the hood and car as we got it ready for him. He now is helping me with my 89.

The bond that forms between a dad and his son when they share a common interest is incredible. Hold onto your memories

God Bless
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:44 PM   #5
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Re: RIP my only son

I'm so sorry to hear about your loss. May you find the strength to recover from this truly tragic event that no family should have to endure. I don't know what else to say to you,as no word's could even begin to help you through your grief.

Mike.
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Old 01-26-2011, 07:45 PM   #6
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Re: RIP my only son

I am sorry to hear of your loss.... I have 2 teenage-boys myself and today's world concerns me...... I worry! Thank you for sharing your story!
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:26 PM   #7
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Re: RIP my only son

Unthinkable tragedy. You're in my heart and my prayers.
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:40 PM   #8
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Re: RIP my only son

First I would like to give my condolences to you and ur family...the memories u have I will be sure to have with my 2 boys as. They grow..4months old and 6.. definitely makes a man want to establish memories with his son/s..
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Old 01-26-2011, 10:58 PM   #9
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Re: RIP my only son

my condolences...
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Old 01-26-2011, 11:00 PM   #10
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Re: RIP my only son

My deepest sympathy

Even though we recently lost our other granddaughter I can only imagine your sorrow. Losing my son would be devastating to me.
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Old 01-26-2011, 11:14 PM   #11
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Re: RIP my only son

A father burying his some is one of the most tragic things i can imagine. You have my sympathy and my prayers. Let us know if there is something we can do as a community.
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Old 01-26-2011, 11:26 PM   #12
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Re: RIP my only son

My deepest and sincerest condolences to you and your family. Im sorry to hear that you're son is gone for something so stupid. He's only two years younger than me. =/
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Old 01-27-2011, 02:09 AM   #13
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Old 01-27-2011, 02:09 AM   #14
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Re: RIP my only son

again my condolences
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Old 01-27-2011, 03:55 AM   #15
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Re: RIP my only son

i am truly sorry for your loss. couldn't imagine that sort of thing.
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Old 01-27-2011, 04:49 AM   #16
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Re: RIP my only son

God bless man, just remember "A great numb feeling washes over me as I let go of the past and look forward to the future.
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Old 01-27-2011, 05:30 AM   #17
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Re: RIP my only son

very sorry to hear that RIP
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Old 01-27-2011, 07:27 AM   #18
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Re: RIP my only son

I am very sorry to hear of your loss. I have been following your father son thread as well. I have spent countless time with my father working on our Formula. And I will always remember those times.

I am sorry this had to happen, some people in the world just aren't right. My condolences.
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Old 01-27-2011, 10:02 AM   #19
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Re: RIP my only son

Sorry for you loss.
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Old 01-27-2011, 10:13 AM   #20
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Re: RIP my only son

As a father, I cannot imagine your grief. It would be beyond anything. I am sure your son misses you too. One day I pray you will see him again. God Bless both of you.
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Old 01-27-2011, 03:33 PM   #21
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Re: RIP my only son

Very sorry to hear about your loss. You and your family will be in my prayers.
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Old 01-27-2011, 07:14 PM   #22
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Re: RIP my only son

Quote:
Originally Posted by Krik View Post
A father burying his some is one of the most tragic things i can imagine. You have my sympathy and my prayers. Let us know if there is something we can do as a community.
I can only imagine what that would feel like. Just like what my grandpa said when my cousin died and I quote "No grandfather should ever have to bury his grandson" he said this two years ago and it has not left my head. I have been following your thread with great interest and an event like this leaves me to wonder, what's in my future as a teenager? However I give you my condolences and terribly sorry about your loss. What is this world coming to?
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Old 01-27-2011, 08:59 PM   #23
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Re: RIP my only son

Thanks so much to all of you for the kind words. I have been grieving heavily for several days, and today something good happened. I attended a candlelight vigil that his friends held, organized by Lt. Col. Carter, who is in charge of the ROTC program at Alex's high school.

They invited me to light the first candle, and light the others off mine, and I spoke briefly. I thanked them all, because it is their displays of affection and testimonials to Alex's character that have helped me to bear this heavy burden.

I feel strong today, and I am grateful to them and all of you for your kindness and words of comfort.
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Old 01-27-2011, 09:22 PM   #24
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Re: RIP my only son

Our Deepest Heart Felt Condolence!

My oldest daughter who is now 21 would sit on the fender or rad whenever I would tinker with my '72 Pontiac Ventura.

Days that will forever be with me.

Prayers going UP!

God Bless Your Family Now And Always

Rob, Dawn, and Family
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Old 01-27-2011, 10:12 PM   #25
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Re: RIP my only son

Sorry for your loss.. As I cannot even imagine what your going through reading your post hurt deep down inside.. (Ran out of words to express feelings)
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Old 01-27-2011, 10:35 PM   #26
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Re: RIP my only son

my deepest sympathy i followed your posts for awhile and it was what gave me the motivation to start restoring my 91 camaro
im only 17 but they say only the good die young and your son sounds like hes as good as they come
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Old 01-27-2011, 11:18 PM   #27
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Re: RIP my only son

I thank you for sharing your son with us during this time of your incredible grief. I cried with you today when I read about your tragic loss. As a father and a grandfather it broke my heart. I pray that God gives you the peace you and your family needs to make it through this.
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Old 01-28-2011, 05:02 PM   #28
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Re: RIP my only son

I read this lastnight and was pretty blown away...I still don't know what to write. I am truly sorry for your loss, and wish for strength for you and your family in this tragic time.

I'm sorry, Ken.
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Old 01-28-2011, 09:44 PM   #29
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Re: RIP my only son

I can not even imagine what you are going through, my condolences.
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Old 01-28-2011, 10:15 PM   #30
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Re: RIP my only son

Very sorry for your loss
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Old 01-28-2011, 11:08 PM   #31
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Re: RIP my only son

My thoughts and prayers are with you and you're family.
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Old 01-29-2011, 12:54 AM   #32
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Re: RIP my only son

My dad passed away back in 05, he was a chev guy like myself. so my first car, at the age of 17(few years back)was an 86 Iroc, almost done restoring it after blood sweat and tears.. brings back memories of us building his cars up.
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Old 01-29-2011, 11:10 AM   #33
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Re: RIP my only son

The story on your sons death is horrible I'm in complete shock reading this. how could people let alone friends do something this horrible to someone at such a young age. there is nothing you could do at the age to cause this kinda hatered. I'm truly sorry for your loss this is a horrible tragedy .I to followed your father son thread. stay strong.
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Old 01-29-2011, 01:06 PM   #34
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Re: RIP my only son

Sorry to hear about this
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Old 01-29-2011, 01:26 PM   #35
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Re: RIP my only son

Sorry to hear about your loss and may GOD bless you and your family and give you peace in such a tragic time .
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Old 02-20-2011, 04:58 PM   #36
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Re: RIP my only son

I am truly sorry for your loss and GOD bless
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Old 02-21-2011, 07:16 AM   #37
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Re: RIP my only son

Again, thanks for all the kind words. It means more than you know that so many people have reached out to us.
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Old 02-25-2011, 11:49 AM   #38
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Re: RIP my only son

tragic story and my deepest sincere condolances as well. Friends or Foes it shouldn't matter Death is nothing that should be up to any mortal. (That is the only thing there is no coming back from) I am sure your son is taking lessons from GOD now know which he is the best teacher.My kids are 12 and 9 and I couldn't imagine what you are going through. The legal system can act like oh the person that did it is behind bars now so your family should have closure but it isn't their kid that they will never see again. Feel free to ramble to me anytime you need to. That is one thing I would like to see on TGO is a memorial board that pictures can be posted of all on here that have been lost but not forgotten. I never met your son in person but I wish I could have.again my sincere condolances for your loss.
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Old 02-25-2011, 12:23 PM   #39
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Re: RIP my only son

My deepest condolences. No parent should ever have to go through what you are going through. Thinking about that happening to any of my kids gives me that sinking heart feeling, I can't imagine how you are feeling. You are in my family's thoughts.
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Old 02-27-2011, 10:32 PM   #40
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Re: RIP my only son

My condolences go out to your family. It makes me hurt inside just reading of this. Sorry.
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Old 02-27-2011, 11:01 PM   #41
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Re: RIP my only son

I am very sorry for your loss.
My condolences,
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Old 02-28-2011, 04:30 PM   #42
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Re: RIP my only son

As a former Amry ROTC cadet at Missouri Western State University my thoughts and prayers go out to your family. It is a shame that such a fine young man was lost. God Bless
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Old 03-07-2011, 10:30 PM   #43
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Re: RIP my only son

I'm so sorry for your loss and for ours. Your son was undoubtedly a remarkable young man. Unfortunately evil often seeks to destroy the best of us. It has been that way since Genesis. I know it doesn't lessen the loss, but know that many people are praying for you and your family and appreciative for the good that you brought to this world through your son. He undoubtedly accomplished what God desired of him through his love and concern for others. Too many parents can't say that about their children and that accounts for alot of what's wrong in the world today.
As for you; Great kids are usually the result of great parents. Thank you for being and inspiration in ways you may never realize. Praying that God blesses and protects you and your family until you are reunited with your boy.
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:34 PM   #44
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Re: RIP my only son

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prokilllsx View Post
I'm so sorry for your loss and for ours. Your son was undoubtedly a remarkable young man. Unfortunately evil often seeks to destroy the best of us. It has been that way since Genesis. I know it doesn't lessen the loss, but know that many people are praying for you and your family and appreciative for the good that you brought to this world through your son. He undoubtedly accomplished what God desired of him through his love and concern for others. Too many parents can't say that about their children and that accounts for alot of what's wrong in the world today.
As for you; Great kids are usually the result of great parents. Thank you for being and inspiration in ways you may never realize. Praying that God blesses and protects you and your family until you are reunited with your boy.
Thank you so much. What a thoughtful message. To update everyone, there is a scholarship fund that was created in his memory. Its purpose is to provide financial assistance to a graduating HS ROTC student to be used toward college expenses.

You can see details here:

alexernandes.org

Thanks again, and God bless you all.

Tim Ernandes
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:38 PM   #45
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Re: RIP my only son

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Thank you so much. What a thoughtful message. To update everyone, there is a scholarship fund that was created in his memory. Its purpose is to provide financial assistance to a graduating HS ROTC student to be used toward college expenses.

You can see details here:

alexernandes.org

Thanks again, and God bless you all.

Tim Ernandes
You are welcome Tim. Your story touched me deeply. I had to spend a day contemplating and praying after finding out before posting the message. Our family went through the loss of my oldest sister (Angela Gay) when she was about the same age as Alex.
I found your build thread to be heart-warming and am currently restoring the twice sold and twice regained 89 Gunmetal Gray GTA that my Dad bought after my sister's death.
He won many trophies racing it at two local tracks back in the 90's, running mid 14's with the L98. My engine builder is currently assembling a H/C/I LS1 for it and my intentions are for Dad to race it again (running 11's though) while he still has it in him.
I've shared on my facebook page the scholarship info and will continue to post it. Thanks for letting us know about it. It's a wonderful thing for you to do in his memory. Your wisdom, hope and desire to help others are inspiring.
Sincerely, Jerry L Buckamneer Jr.
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Old 03-09-2011, 08:56 PM   #46
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Transmission: 89 700R4
Axle/Gears: 3.42 gov lock

Re: RIP my only son

I'm sorry for you lose, i followed you build right after i got my sports coue and my grandpa and dad helped me build it, if you dont mind me asking though, what was the grudge? also i hope the police find who ever hurt your son and make them pay the price, its always hard on me when i see kids my age falling victim to todays world, its hard and i hope this world starts inproving because its hard watching stuff like this, again im sorry for your lose, if you need anyone to talk to please feel free to PM me at any time
Mitchell and family.
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Old 03-17-2011, 07:51 PM   #47
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Re: RIP my only son

I am so sorry about your loss. Your son sounds like a heck of a young man. I am glad he will be remembered this way and that he touched so many lives in such a positive and loving way. God bless you and you family during these trying times and I am certain your son would want you enjoy the car that you built together.
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Old 03-17-2011, 08:22 PM   #48
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Re: RIP my only son

Im sorry to hear about your lose
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Old 03-18-2011, 09:29 AM   #49
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Re: RIP my only son

Quote:
Originally Posted by evilemokid94 View Post
I'm sorry for you lose, i followed you build right after i got my sports coue and my grandpa and dad helped me build it, if you dont mind me asking though, what was the grudge? also i hope the police find who ever hurt your son and make them pay the price, its always hard on me when i see kids my age falling victim to todays world, its hard and i hope this world starts inproving because its hard watching stuff like this, again im sorry for your lose, if you need anyone to talk to please feel free to PM me at any time
Mitchell and family.
I'll tell you the story, but it will make you sick.

My son had a 3rd degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do and was well-respected for his ability to handle an opponent. He took the tenets of this discipline quite seriously, and always came to the defense of those who could not defend themselves.

He came to the aid of a girl who was in ROTC with him when he learned that her ex-boyfriend was hitting her. He made it clear to that boy that he was not going to permit the abuse to continue, and the kid backed off. The girl viewed Alex as her hero, and they began dating. Her mother was very protective of her virtue, and so would not allow her to be with my son unescorted. This was fine with us, and we honored her wishes.

One day I remarked that we had not seen this girl for a while, and he casually told me that she had been too 'clingy', expecting him to study less and spend less time with ROTC and Tae Kwon Do so that he could spend more time with her. He made it clear to her that he was not willing to alter his lifestyle to accommodate that, and they parted amicably. This was one unusual thing about him: All of his ex-girlfriends remained good friends with him.

About a year later, the boy who shot Alex, also an ROTC cadet, began dating this same girl. They became serious, and planned to marry after they got out of high school. He began spending so much time at her mother's house that he began spending nights there on the couch and began keeping clothes there.

Around a year ago, they began to suspect that she might be pregnant. They told nobody, for fear of her mother, etc. One day soon after, they were all horsing around together, and according to this boy, Alex hit her in the stomach. Soon afterward, she had a heavy flow, obviously no longer pregnant (if she ever was -- she claims that she took a test that was inconclusive). Alex was completely unaware of the possible pregnancy. If he had been aware, he never would have engaged in any physical contact. Besides, his training and discipline would never have allowed him to hit her hard enough even to cause a minor injury.

This kid got it in his head that it was a miscarriage, caused by Alex, and decided to kill him. He planned the whole thing carefully for weeks (we believe he started planning right around the time that the supposed baby would have been born). In the meantime, the girl in question, completely unaware of what her fiance was planning, asked Alex to stand up for her at their upcoming wedding. I remember him telling me that he was going to be in a wedding, but only in passing.

The plan was to make a date with Alex to go target shooting at a 'great new place that my Dad just bought'. Alex talked freely about it, so this kid abruptly re-scheduled the date so that there would be no record of it, and Alex wouldn't have time to tell anyone. Then he met him at Wal-Mart, drove him out to this remote location, and shot him to death. Alex's first clue that there was a problem was when the first bullet hit him. He never even knew that there might have been a pregnancy, or that this kid was holding any kind of a grudge. He pretended all along to be a good friend.

If you can't connect the dots, don't worry. Nobody else can, either. It is interesting to note that the killer wanted a military and/or law enforcement career, and was denied both because he has juvenile diabetes. There are those who suspect that it was jealousy. For my own part, I think the devil got to him, and may have used jealousy as a springboard.

The boy who killed him made a full confession during police inerrogation, otherwise we might still be looking for Alex's body. He was immediately arrested, and faces prosecution for first degree murder. The first court date is March 31st.
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Old 03-20-2011, 02:53 PM   #50
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Re: RIP my only son

So sorry for your loss what a terrible tragedy. I can't imagine anything like that happening to my daughter or anyone's child. I think you should go all out on his car as a tribute to your son.
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