In the last few weeks, three 20-something year old people I’m tangentially connected to have been killed in collision related accidents. I’ve only even met one of these people and I only met him for about 30 minutes at his birthday party. But still, it’s sobering when someone is a healthy 20-something one minute and dead the next. No warning, no early indication signs, etc.
One of the deaths was a young woman who was teaching in Arizona and had dabbled in the poker world. I didn’t know her but I knew of her. I’m pretty certain I never met her but I may have at a live event at some point. I only learned about her death via some facebook posts but she was evidently close to some people in the poker world and, from everything I’ve read, she was really loved in her community. She was a passenger in a one car accident and I don’t think there was alcohol involved but I don’t really know.
The second death was the guy who I met a few weeks ago at his birthday party here in Las Vegas. It was a very random meeting as I wasn’t even really supposed to be at the birthday party and I was only brought there because I happened to be in the car with the person who was invited. But I met the guy, talked with him briefly, he was turning something like 24 and he seemed like a very polite individual. A few weeks later, he died when a car ignored right-of-way and forced him to crash his motorcycle. He died from his injuries.
So now that’s two young people who died from, apparently, no fault whatsoever of their own. The third was not all that connected to me but the story really stuck with me. My cousin and her husband live in San Diego and one of her friends there recently had a very close friend killed after being struck by a vehicle. When my cousin was explaining why her friend wasn’t around when I went out them in Pacific Beach a week or two ago when I was visiting California, I was really shocked to hear the story. This was a healthy young guy with no apparent problems and just like that a vehicle hits him and he’s gone.
Anyway, maybe it’s because of my upbringing, but it’s incredibly rare for me to hear about people connected to me in some way dying at a young age. I was very lucky to grow up in a privileged manner and almost everyone had their shit together. So pretty much the only deaths were things like teenage cancer and clearly those are few and far between and a lot less sudden. For me to hear about three incidents like this is really a lot. I just can’t imagine this sort of thing ever happening to someone close to me. I mean, I always know it’s possible but I just can’t imagine it actually happening. I don’t believe in jinxes so I feel comfortable saying that I’ve been incredibly lucky thus far in life to be largely unaffected directly by tragedy. But since these recent tragedies remind me that anything can happen at any time to anyone, this makes me more convinced than ever that I should move to Philadelphia and not assume that everything will be peachy indefinitely. While I like Vegas for the most part and I may well end up here at least part-time in the long run (winters here ftw), I like Philadelphia more. I should just live where I want to live.