A Common Tragedy

Confession:  When I first saw my friend Rachel Ann’s invitation to attempt her “List Story Writer’s Challenge”, I was skeptical.  About whether or not a story could be told using nothing but lists.  About whether or not I could tell a story using only lists.  But after reading her original and very interesting list story “In Mr. Habte’s Apartment”, I couldn’t push the idea aside.  Rachel Ann’s list story and the challenge itself twisted in my mind like a burrowing worm and refused to leave, finally wrapping itself around whatever shriveled subcortex in my warped mind controls creativity.

Scriptocystic ideas began to germinate.  After a routine day in court, a good one finally implanted in my creative subcortex wall and began to grow.  I am grateful for the quick and relatively painless labor.  And now, with the oafish pride of any new father, I offer it up to you, beloved friends and fellow Bloggers, swaddled in my hopes and love.  Please let me know what you think in the comments down below.  And please visit the talented genius Rachel Ann’s incredibly creative blog Fitful, Fearful, Phantasmal.

Thank you, Rachel Ann, for the challenge.

Criminal Charges listed in case # 2018 – F – 11859, State of TN v Simon Leatherby, on the Copperhead County General Sessions Court Arraignment Docket for Wednesday, July 25th, 2018:
Ct. 1:  TCA 39-17-418, Simple Possession/Casual Exchange of a Controlled Substance, A Misdemeanor
Ct. 2:  TCA 39-17-425, Possession of Unlawful Drug Paraphernalia Uses & Activities, A Misdemeanor
Ct. 3:  TCA 39-17-434(a), Methamphetamine, Manufacture, Delivery, Sale, or Possession with Intent, B Felony
Ct. 4:  TCA 39-417-417(G), Schedule VI Drugs:  Manufacture, Delivery, Sale, or Possession with Intent, C Felony
Disposition:  Defendant failed to answer all docket calls, arrest warrant issued:  2018 – F – 11859A, TCA 39-16-609(D), Failure to Appear, A Misdemeanor, $50,000.00 bond, entered by Deputy Clerk N. Wiseman.

Partial transcript of Copperhead County EMS 911 call received 5:45:29 PM Wed. 7/25/18:

Caller:  Omigod, omigod, you gotta help my baby!
Dispatch:  Ma’am–
C:  Omysweetjesus please you gotta come right now please!
D:  Ma’am, what is your name, location and the nature of your emergency?
C:  Omigod it’s me I’m here I’m home sweet mother of god I think my baby’s dead!
D:  Ma’am, I need your name and location.
C:  Omigod omigod this is Namona Leatherby oh sweet Jesus he ain’t breathin’!  I’m at 2525  Black Racer Road.
D:  Ma’am, an ambulance is on the way.  I need you to check your baby for a pulse–
C:  He ain’t a baby he’s just my baby osweetgod his lips is blue!
D:  Ma’am, I need you to—
C:  He’s so cold why’s he cold omigod, osweetlord, oh my sweet baby boy!

Selected comments from Wade Funeral Home’s online obituary tribute page for Simon Bryce Leatherby, 7/26/93 – 7/25/18:

You may be gone but you will never be forgotten. You always was the one that made everyone laugh. Everytime I seen you, you always had a big smile on you’re face you are going to be missed by so many people you was loved by everyone. RIP Simon love you. (Kay Cameron, 7/27/18)

Sending prayers to the family such a great and care free spirited young man who will be greatly missed. (Tippy Smith, 7/27/18)

I love you cousin Sime!! We grew up together and had lots of memories that I will cherish forever!! Too young and too soon!!💔 (Savannah Satterfield, 7/28/18)

RIP Simon U were a great guy will miss u (Cheryl Johnson, 7/28/18)

I am so sorry for your loss Namona your Simon was one of the happiest people I have every been around, he will be missed by many of course everyone who met him knew he never met a stranger and could make anyone laugh no matter what kind of day it was. May Christ be with the Leatherby family, during this difficult time and may everyone have peace knowing God has accepted a great angel today with love and care. (John Cabell, 7/29/18)

Lists conclude.

Although this story is a work of fiction, similar events occur every day in cities and counties across America.  Drug and alcohol addiction is a serious disease that has reached epidemic proportions in my beloved country.  If you have a friend or loved one who is in the grip of drug or alcohol addiction, and chances are high that you do, please call or encourage them to call the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or visit SAMHSA’s Website at: https://www.samhsa.gov/find-help/national-helpline

Take care, be well, and stay sane, y’all!



6 thoughts on “A Common Tragedy

  1. Nice take on it! And I admire the important message and purpose behind it as well. Bless you. You know what you have here? It’s an epistolary story! Ever heard the term? It is a story told through a series of documents that exist in the world of the characters. First you have the court records, then the call transcript, then the obituary postings. So cool! Glad you took the challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

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