school

‘I was trying to look cool in front of my friend. ‘I hate this car. It’s dumb.’ I vividly remember Billy gently running his left hand over the dashboard and softly saying, ‘I think it’s nice.’

“There was this kid in my class named Billy. His family must have struggled financially. I know he was often forgotten at school pickup. One day, we were bringing him home. We had this Chevrolet minivan. It was gold. It wasn’t fancy, or flashy. It had cloth seats and probably the bare minimum. It was just a minivan, but it worked.”

‘You have to choose right now. Me or him.’ That was the last time I saw my brother alive.’: Woman battles 10-year addiction after brother’s death, starts ‘new chapter’ after near-death experience

“He was coming home from a party after drinking more than he should have. He lost control of the car. It was an eerily morning knock. There stood my mom and Papaw. ‘You brother’s been in an accident. He didn’t make it.’ Instead of reaching for closure and clarity, I reached for the bottle. I was well on my way to being the last living child for my parents to bury.”

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