A Father’s Suicide
I’m a survivor, a survivor of suicide
My life was forever changed the day my Daddy died
I was the one who found him lying on the bed
A rifle resting on his chest
A bullet in his head
His eyes were open with a deadly gaze
His pale skin and lifeless body put me in a haze
This is the awful memory that I live with day to day
The last memory of the one I love
The day my Dad chose to go away
It’s like a terrible nightmare and I see it everyday
It doesn’t matter what I’m doing
It never goes away
It’s always there in the back of my mind eating at me like a cancer
My emotions run high as I search for an answer
Point the finger, place the blame
It’s his fault, it’s her fault
They should be ashamed
But the reality is only one can be held accountable
The one who’s not here to admit that he is responsible
The one who pulled the trigger and changed our lives forever
He is the one who chose the path that threw our family off its track
Tossing and turning our world upside down
Turning our smile into a frown
This is so unfair
Where do I go, who do I turn to
Cause he’s no longer there
All I have now are pictures in a frame
Memories of smiles and laughter we shared
So many things left without an answer
This is just not fair
What could I have done just to make him see
How much he mattered to everyone
How much he mattered to me
What could I do
What could I say
A kiss, a hug, maybe say I love you
Would it save him for only one more day
Or would he take his life in some other way
This type of thing just doesn’t happen…not to us…not to me
It happens to other people… not MY family
Is this really happening
Say it isn’t so
Pinch me someone please
Tell me he didn’t go
Shake me, wake me
It has to be a dream
It can’t be real, it can’t be true
Please tell me my Dad’s life isn’t through
It’s real, it’s true…Oh God it’s true
He’s not coming back
My heart has been broken
It’s been ripped in two
The world seems darker with sorrow all around
My stomach is in knots as I fall to the ground
I can’t eat, I can’t sleep
My mind won’t stop racing
My feet are sore because I just can’t stop pacing
My shoulders are heavy and my body is numb
Why oh why did he have to pick up that gun
I’m so angry
I just want to scream
But sorrow over takes me and I drop to my knees
I ask God why…
Can’t I have one more chance
I just want to tell him how much he matters to me
Maybe he wouldn’t do it
Maybe I could make him see
People say he is selfish
But they just don’t know
He would have done anything for anyone
He had a heart of gold
His family and friends are the reason why he stayed
Its what gave him the strength to fight another day
When all he really wanted was to lay down and die
And then the day came when he decided to say goodbye
Broken and defeated he finally gave in
He felt that there was no other way
He just had to end his cycle of pain
And in his desperation he robbed us blind
Taking our gift of time spent
His love and presence along with him
To the grave he went
Not thinking of the devastation that he would leave behind
I miss my father every day
He is always on my mind
I’m not who I used to be
That day I lost a big part of me
But I refuse to play the victim and he will not die in vain
I am a survivor and they will know his name
Claudis Leon King, also known as Lonnie
Loving husband, Father, Grandpa, brother, son, cousin and Uncle
He was MY father and MY friend and he will never be forgotten
Until we meet again

If you are considering or contemplating suicide, or you know someone who is, please know that your life matters, you would be greatly missed and call the
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 

If you are a survivor of suicide, please also seek support.  You are not alone.

Read about the creation of Project 488. Project 488: Letters To Loved Ones Lost
Project 488 is done in memory of my husband who always said we’d be together for the 88s.
I love you, my husband.