We had a funny relationship. I remember when we found each other on Twitter last summer. You lamented over a jerk that texted you with bad grammar, and I knew immediately that we would be friends (I’ll learn to forgive you for being a proponent of Oxford commas).
I can’t help but read over and over the 591 Facebook messages we have back and forth and the last text you ever sent me. “Weird,” you said two days ago. Yeah, things are weird right now. You’re gone, and you were taken from this world in such a horrific way.
We never had the chance to meet in person, but with our lengthy chats over Twitter direct messages, Facebook emails and text messages, outsiders would think we shared a brain. We connected instantly over our mutual dreams of working in the National Hockey League and the struggles of being a young woman trying to break into such a difficult, male-driven industry. You handled every obstacle with such grace and respect for yourself. Not many women carry themselves in the same way.
It’s funny how social media works that way – Colorado is so far from Florida, but we still shared a long-distance bond over our intense passions and big plans for the future.
It wrecks me that we will never be able to produce our own beefed up version of female-centered NHL talk show While the Men Watch like we wanted or take that trip to Las Vegas that you insisted we should set up later this summer. “You only need to do two nights in Vegas if you do it right!” you told me.
Unfulfilled potential is heartbreaking. But the way your dynamic potential was ripped from you by the bullet of a stranger rocks me to the core in a disturbing and dark way. Your fierce ambition and motivation was so precious and rare. So much anger boils inside of me for the future you wanted so badly but now won’t get the chance.
But don’t worry, Jessica. I won’t give up on my passions – it’s fearless, firecracker women like you who pave the way for the rest of us.
With love and hockey sticks,