RIP, Austin Quinn

He was a charmer.  Charismatic, hilariously funny in a deadpan sort of way.  A close friend of my son.  All of 18 years old.  Graduated on June 3rd along with the rest of the Burris Class of 2011.  Had his entire life ahead of him.  Tragically, pointlessly dead, trying to get his car through a down railway crossing gate as he was late for work.  Hit by a train hurtling at 50+ mph. 

His sister, who is a close friend of my daughter, was with us when her dad called and told her, before she found out online.  She had just driven with my son and husband down to Florida the day before, and reached Florida at 3 am yesterday.   She had just gotten up, and we were all looking forward to a bright, sunny day that held the promise of good weather, the beach, food and doing nothing but hanging out.  It quickly unraveled into a black hole of a day where nothing made sense.   We put her and my kids on the next flight we could find back to Indy.

I just found the bagels she had put in the toaster oven.  She had just gotten up, and was getting breakfast.   I was cleaning out some unpacked boxes, and found Austin’s graduation invitation.  It was on June 5th.  He died on July 3rd.  

I believe in karma, and don’t think there are coincidences in life.  Everything bad that has ever happened to me has turned out either to be a good thing, or made sense later.  But Austin’s death will always remain a tragedy that makes no sense.  My kids are close to Sarah and Austin, about the same age and like all his friends, are consumed with grief. 

I didn’t know him too well, but he was one of my favorites of my son’s friends.  He always made me laugh.  My heart goes out to his parents, sister and all his friends and family.  You will be missed by all, Austin.  Rest in peace.

PS.

Readers: If you’re tempted to comment on driving habits etc. please please hold it.   The family does not need it.  Thank you.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Tania
    Jul 04, 2011 @ 15:16:11

    Sri, Thank you for adding another dimension to a very sad story. I had wondered if your kids knew him, so it is all the more the sad now. –Tania

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  2. Karen Avery
    Jul 20, 2011 @ 19:33:54

    Thank you for sharing. As a teacher at Burris, I have my own perspective. You’ve given me another. Austin’s charisma will be greatly missed by all. My heart goes out also to Sarah and his family and friends. K Avery

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