To the editor:
I thought you might want to publish this letter from my son, Josh Rowe, that he wrote after hearing about the mass shooting in my hometown on July 4th:
On July 4th I got off a plane to a flurry of alerts, messages and missed calls. Including notifications about a shooting in Highland Park. The city I spent every weekend in until we moved to Warwick . The city I visited my grandparents in until 6 years ago, the city my mom grew up in, a city that in more ways than one was my home for the first 11 years of my life.
Seeing those missed calls and messages created a sensation of fear that 20 years ago very few Americans could understand. In our modern reality it’s a sensation that unfortunately has been felt by many. Independence Day 2022 I joined the club of horror. The club of Americans who have seen their towns soaked with the blood of victims, tears of their loved ones , and dreams that will never be.
When I think of Highland Park, I think of playing on the fountain outside Walker Brothers after eating way too many pancakes. I think of fun times with my grandparents. I think of endless adventures in the woods and playing with the newest gadgets of the day with my friend, Doug. I think of hotdogs at Michaels, and summers at the water park. Highland Park is a suburban heaven.
These memories are now soiled with images of pure evil. It will not change what Highland Park is though. For me, it will always be the location of my best childhood memories.
In our civic and religious tradition preservation of life is above all else. This is not the reality though in the United States of 2022. In our current climate, life is at the end of the list of priorities in the United States. Action needs to be taken. Enough is enough.
Diane and Josh Rowe