Sometimes odd things come about that remind us of things in our past. There have been reports in the news lately about the discovery of a body found in the water, which might be the missing woman who was reported missing from her yacht. My mother and I were pondering if her husband had anything to do with her "accidental" drowning, and that led us to wonder what had ever happened with the investigation into the death of my childhood best friend, who also died from "accidental" drowning.
Laurie was lost from my life on 11/13/1998, 7 years this coming November. In all this time I have known almost nothing about the details of her death. Other than what her mother told us when she called to let us know she was gone. We knew there had been an accident, and Laurie had drowned in a car in a lake. There were suspicious circumstances- and it was under investigation. Other than that, all we had was speculation. We had heard that her boyfriends story had changed a couple of times, and that made it worse for us. Over the years I have come to believe in my heart that he had something to do with her death. If I am wrong, fine, I'm wrong. If I am right, may God have mercy on his soul.
After we started talking about it, Mom started searching for info online. She first found her obituary. The reminder that she left two small children behind was heart rending all over again. Jake should be around 13 now, Raven is around 10. I have not seen them in a long time. I need to make an effort to get back in touch with Wanda, her mother, and Laurie's children.
Then she did a search for articles on her death- we found two. The cold details of the story, and the graphic images that arose from those words was like being violently hit in the stomach. I felt ill. I could not breathe and all I could do was cry. It was one more damn from my past bursting out, and all the feelings were laid bare and raw. In 1998 I was numb, and I shut away the pain and focused on the memories. Upon reading about her death and her last moments I was unable to hide away from the agony of losing her, or the horror at the manner of her death.
When we were younger she used to say she would die young, would not live to see 30. I used to get furious with her, and yet she fulfilled her own prophecy and died at 26. It is even sadder to relate that my last contact with Laurie was an argument. She was with a horrible, unfaithful, abusive man, it broke my heart, and I fought with her about her choices. Our last words were hurtful and angry, but I have to believe she knows I loved her.
The police say there was no foul play. Perhaps my view is so colored by years of belief that when I read her "boyfriends" account of the "accident" and his proclaimations of his attempts to save her, I still feel in my gut that he had more to do with this than anyone knows. There are no follow up stories about the results of the examination of the vehicle. If I had the case # I could get the case file from the Colorado State Patrol, but I don't, and it is not something I would ask for.
This summer I plan to go to San Isabel Lake, and find the area where the accident happened. I plan to spend some time there and make my own peace with my loss. I am also going to write to her mother and make plans to go see her and Laurie's children. It's time for that, past time in fact. I hope to also be able to visit her final resting place. I do not know if she was buried or cremated- either way....I have to settle this in my heart.