An emergency text and two missed calls.
I returned the first call, a panic voice answers, “Yash has been shot!”
My heart drops. I respond in confusion, “What? What do you mean? Is he at the hospital? Where is he?”
A million thoughts run through my mind, my body is heated, my hands are cold and shaky. The voice on the other end of the phone has no answers, “I don’t know; I’m not sure; I don’t have all the details.” Instantly, I jump into protective mode – “I have to find him” – I thought to myself. “I’ll call you back”, I responded to the phone. I hung up.
I looked to my mom who was on the phone with my aunt, her sister, the mother whose son has been shot. My mom looks worried, I fight back tears and thoughts of thinking the worse. “We have to find him” I reiterate to myself. My phone rings again, “Jay said Yash was shot at Chapel Park but I don’t know where that is”, my aunt’s voice cracks, she begins to cry. With a feeling of relief that he’s not in the hospital, I replied, “I know the park and we’re on our way there, I’ll call you back."
Cautiously speeding through the rain, our phones are ringing back to back. I answer, “Dionne, do you know…” – I interrupt, “I’ve talked to Aunt DD, I know Yash has been shot. He’s at Chapel Park." My cousin responds that she’s already in the area, she’ll locate him and call me back.
Minutes felt like hours. Driving the speed limit felt like riding a turtle’s back. I say a prayer, hoping to calm my thoughts, again I’m trying not to think the worse.
My phone rings again, “I’m here on the scene but I don’t see him, just police cars and an ambulance truck.” My voice shakes, “Describe to me EVERYTHING you see, as you are seeing it. He has to be there. We’re minutes away.” Little did I know, the next few moments would change my world forever. “On my God, Dionne, I see a body on the ground. It’s covered. I don’t know if that’s him.” Camille’s voice begins to shake and I can hear her tears through the phone. “Dionne, please get here!”
To be continued.