It was such a sad and surreal day yesterday. It started with a call from my brother Larry. He wanted to tell me, before I saw it on the news, that they found our friend Ed. Back in 1978, Ed disappeared . He was coming home from a Wedding reception, dropped off his date and was never seen again.
Ed was my friend. We sang together in the Young People's Choir at Immaculate Heart of Mary in Chicago. We laughed together, cried together. We danced together at parties, and at a homecoming dance at Gordon Tech.
Mostly I remember his smile and quick laugh. His generosity. I remember his gift to us for our wedding, the dress and bonnet he gave to our baby daughter Kristen. I also remember his Mom and Dad. Such lovely people. They opened their home to our group for one of our weekly parties after singing at the 5:00 Mass on Saturday. We were more than a choir, we were family.
The last time I saw Ed was at our apartment, we were the only married couple and had our own place. Many of the choir members who started the YPC were there. Steve our choir director was leaving. It was the end of an era for us old timers....The choir would go on, but would never be the same. I sat on the floor of our dining room, next to Ed...as Steve spoke, Ed and I held hands, it was a ending...
Ed went missing not long after...I visited his parents. They had a shrine with photos of Ed and candles. I was a brand new Mom and I could not comprehend their loss. I kept in touch for many years. One year a Christmas card came with the sad news that Ed's Mom had died. Every year I tried to write, to tell Ed's parents that I remembered Ed.
Then yesterday, there was a news conference. Ed's remains had been found in 2008, but not identified until recently. Ed had been murdered and his body dumped in a forest preserve. I hurts to even write that sentence. His bones found by someone walking in the woods. Because of the notorious John Wayne Gacy case, Ed's remains were identified. Ed's sister sent in her DNA on the chance that Ed may have been a victim. Ed was not a victim of Gacy but of a man who was found with his car and some possessions months after his disappearance. That man died last year, after serving only four years for auto theft. They could not convict him without finding Ed.
There was always a hope, that Ed would come home, but like Ed's sister Ruth said in the press conference, "not this way".
So today I mourn my friend Ed. Now we know, a mystery solved, but there is no comfort. Closure? Knowing is harder than I ever thought. Comfort comes in so many happy memories, in the songs we sang together. Some trust in chariots, and chariots they ride, we ride the wings of love, together side by side. Rest in peace my friend.