On the corner of my desk there’s a sealed manilla envelope that I’ve been avoiding. As I work on other things, cook, clean, and do everything else to avoid sitting down and opening it, it sits, waiting. The envelope has two copies of Andy’s dental records. Eddie mailed them after our last conversation, an extra set like the ones he’s taking to aid groups, medical examiners and law enforcement at every opportunity. “I sent two copies,” Eddie said.
I have to admit there’s been some unanticipated delays (somehow summer flu is always more surprising than the winter version) but as well as working on the news page project, I’ve been prepping background content and starting new reporting projects. So bear with me – there’s a lot in the works. Look for more short updates about interviews, records requests and other process work as stories get off the ground in the next weeks. Of course, this wouldn’t be a teaser post without a taste of what’s coming:
It’s been awhile since I’ve heard from Eddie. His latest call, just before the end of March, is unexpected but follow-up on my part is probably overdue. There’s no new information about Andy. Instead Eddie has called to give me report numbers. Eddie’s wife has filed a missing persons report with NAMUS, a national missing persons database.
What is it like to lose someone? It’s a question we dodge like wisecracking heroes under fire in an action movie – if we’re fast and witty enough, we tell ourselves, we’ll never have to know. Most of the time, for most people, this works pretty well. When it doesn’t, we have questions that need answers. I responded to Eddie’s email with a list of contact information collected during my reporting – law enforcement, humanitarian volunteers, medical examiners and website listings that had formed a resource sidebar in one of my stories.