Music by Simon and Garfunkel
“The inability of people to communicate with each other, not particularly internationally but especially emotionally, so what you see around you are people unable to love each other” – Art Garfunkel
Every life touches a life. That statement could not be truer than now for the people Alexander Villafane touched. He was a Humboldt Park youth football coach and resident of Little Village when he was shot in the head in front of his son just outside his home. Not only did the 39-year-old husband and father leave behind 2 sons and 2 daughters, he also left behind the children he coached and mentored.
For all the lives Mr. Villafane touched, there were many more to come. Children who needed a stable male presence in the most critical stage — ages 10-13– will now be left to navigate life without him. One bullet silenced a man who sacrificed his time and energy to keep kids off the streets and give them something positive and meaningful to look forward to. Just one bullet.
The ripple effect of a life snatched away cuts deep into the heart of our communities. The loss of this man reverberates from Humboldt Park, IL where he grew up and coached the Patriots, to Little Village where he lived, and throughout Chicago. As we wrestle with the senselessness of his death, we have to also discover what it will take to staunch the bloodshed that is to come.
Our communities are only as strong as the people who reside in them. Cameras can be installed and multitudes of police can be deployed but until we decide to stop covering for murderers, these tragedies will only continue to flow. Alexander Villafane is gone. We can only pray that the 10 to 13-year-old boys he left behind will not stray from the love that he instilled in them. We can only pray that whoever knows the person who did this will come forward. Maybe then the ripples of loss will become the waves of change.
(c) 2015 Kim R Woods – all rights reserved
**video: Homicide Watch Chicago homicides.suntimes.com
I thought of you today but you are not here,
How can you know that you are no longer here?
Do you know?
Can you possibly know that you are already missed?
Did you ever wonder in your heart whether certain people would know you are even gone?
How can you know – or feel awareness of- the deep-rooted shock experienced by all?
How can you?
You are no longer here
I can’t say ‘hello’, ‘how is your day going’, or ‘good-bye, see you later’
There is no later… only good-bye
I can’t enjoy the friendliness in your eyes or the sound of your voice
There was a comfort of knowing that you were simply… in the world
How would you ever know that?
I never told you
Never did I say “I admire you” – just because
Never did I say “It was good to know you”
Too late… too late
I can not tell you now
Still, I can’t help but ask
How can you know…
How much you were loved?
Did you know?
©2010 Kim Rosemon-Woods- all rights reserved
**pictures: Homicide Watch Chicago– Homicide.Suntimes.com