Friday, January 1, 2010

Jessica Moll: 8 October 1985 - 1 January 2010

Each year in South Africa, thousands of people are killed in car accidents.

Today one of those people was twenty-four year old Jessica Moll, daughter of my cousin Beverley and husband Mike, grand daughter of my Aunt Yvonne and Uncle Reg, who live a few houses down from their family, in the hot, pretty town of Paarl.

They don't know yet what happened, or how. And just like that she is gone.

What an awful way to start this year.

Vince and I had a quiet evening at home last night, a good dinner, for which we dressed up, and a long walk in the falling snow, through Brooklyn Heights, before midnight. Somewhere, Jessica was probably asleep, seven hours head of us.

We stood on the promenade and watched a party in a brownstone, with double bass, a saxophone, a singer, and couples dancing in the warm light. Behind us people gathered in coats and under umbrellas, looking at the lit monoliths of downtown Manhattan across the East River. From the south end of the Promenade uncannily movie-like 20's dance music came drifting, and I thought someone must have set up an old-fashioned gramophone.

We watched far-off fireworks, and turned home, walking past pairs of cops, out in force, obligingly taking pictures of tourists and turning a blind eye to celebratory champagne corks popping.

The 20's dance music was coming out of a cop car parked at the end of the Promenade, lights blazing, music streaming to us from his powerful roof-mounted loudhailer. We smiled. Happy New Year, he said to us through his open window, from his seat inside.

...Happy New Year

A tall order at the best of times.

To my cousins, and aunt and uncle, I am so terribly, terribly sorry. You have been constantly in our thoughts.

01/04/10 - From Jessica's Facebook page, from her friend Dora, who was in the car with her. Jessica died on the scene:

My best friend, I have survived our ordeal, but you have departed in quite an untimely manner, if you don't mind me saying so. Nothing will ever be the same. I love you and you will be with me always. I promise to take care of Appel, as he did of me. I hope that lovely Bach we were listening to filled your ears and heart to the last, as you will mine.

28 comments:

  1. Marie, I am so sorry to hear about this. Our deepest sympathy to your family.

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  2. Very sorry to read this, Marie, my condolences.

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  3. We lost a young friend to cancer right before Christmas. It is so odd and incongruous when young folks die. So, so sorry, Marie.

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  4. Deepest sympathy to your family. It's good you're going home soon.

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  5. My condolences, Marie, and Vince, now a part of family.

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  6. Marie, I'm so sorry. Such a sad and senseless thing to happen.

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  7. Life is so tenuous. 38 years ago, on New Year's Eve and his birthday, I lost my first husband. New Years Eve has never been a good time for me ever since. I am so sorry that you have to experience such sadness. It can never be explained or understood by others until they themselves have experienced it.

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  8. Marie and Vince, my condolences. Such sad sad news to break in the New Year.

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  9. I'm so sorry to hear of a young life lost . My sympathy to you , her parents and grandparents .

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  10. So sad to hear this. My deepest sympathy to you and your family.

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  11. Thank you very much, every one of you.

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  12. Ek is vreeslik jammer vir jou en jou familie Marie. Ek het my pa verloor in a ongeluk met 'n taxi toe ek 17 was en my matrik geskryf het. Life is never the same! Ek bid vir jou familie.

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  13. Marie and Vince, I am so sorry for the loss of young Jessica. I send you gentle energy and wish comfort for you and your family.

    Keli'i

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  14. I'm so sorry, Marie. My deepest sympathy to your whole family. What a sad loss of a young life...

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  16. What a tragic, senseless loss. You have my deepest sympathy.

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  17. My deepest condolences, Marie.

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  18. I am so sorry for your loss, Marie. You have my deepest sympathy.

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  19. A child dying before their parents is just inherently wrong. I'm so sorry.

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  20. My brother died when he was 24 (in 1976), it is a hurt that never heals. My heart is with you and your family.

    much love,
    Melanie

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  21. Oh, I am so sorry to hear. What a senseless loss of such a young life - and as you say, what an awful way for the family to start the new year. You'll be in my thoughts.

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  22. Thank you again for your kind wishes...

    We know a little more. It seems Jessica's car strayed over the middle line in the road, on a blind rise. She met with a Mercedes coming the other way, which tried to swerve out of her way. Jessica's passenger broke her arm, no one in the Mercedes was hurt. It's possible Jessica was trying to avoid something in the road, or that her attention wandered momentarily.

    We take cars for granted, and forget that a second's inattention can end our lives, and shatter the lives of others.

    Be vigilant. Stay alive.

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  23. Marie- I'm utterly sorry for your family's loss.

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  24. Now back in NY, reading your blog.
    This is Just Awful. I'm so sorry.

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  25. I lost my love. I promised I'll never leave her alone. I now find myself drifting between responsibilities. We got engaged the Sunday (27th). I pledged my life. I can't keep myself from crying. I can't build on by myself. Dreams we discussed, plans we made. We were going to rock the world. We knew each other before we met. We loved each other before. Now the responsibility lies on me.

    Seven "I"'s. Seven "We"'s. One me. One her.

    One life wasted, one life stolen. One life deprived of meaning.

    She made this easy. She prepared me for this. She lost her other half 8 months ago. I stole her for a while.

    She lived. Every moment a new gift. Something small, appreciated. Something meaningless, defined. I'll live this life. I'll see her in the next.

    "Live life like you're gonna die, because you're gonna die." -William Shatner.

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  26. Appel - you break my heart...Your sister wrote to me about you and Jess. I wish I could give a long hug. I know it would not help. The only thing I can say is something that will make no sense to you now. One day, far from now, you will wake up in the morning and want to be awake. For now, you just have to keep going. It will be bad for a long, long time. Then there will be a better time. I know it does not seem possible, or even right.

    Ek dra jou in my hart. Ek is so baie, baie jammer. xxx

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  27. Hello, I feel torn writing this to you because I know very little about the world of blogs and what is appropriate to say or not to say. I just thought I would share what has compelled me to write you. I was being a silly girl and googling myself and up came your blog. The date is what got my attention. 1985 that is. You see I have a fascination with pennies. When I find them I pick them up and look at the date. Nine times out of ten they are a year I find no correlation to my own life. But some times it's my own birthdate or a date that means something special and I take it as a sign that my grandmother is showing her love from beyond the grave. Anyway, point is my silly little fascination took me across a penny today that said 1985. I couldn't think of anything that meant something to me so I placed it back on the counter of my kitchen. (you see they show up all the time out of no where, I swear) but when I clicked on 1985 on my google search and read your blog I lost my breath. My name is Jessica Moll too. I don't know if I should have shared this with you...this strange turn of events that lead me to your page but I'm sure it's for some good reason to tell you that things happen for reason we know not why and I hope you take solace in knowing that I'm sure you were loved by your Jessica Moll. I'm sure this was a special way to tell you that. Sorry if this bothered you...just had to share. Even though we don't know one another please except my deepest condolences for your loss.

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  28. I read this post on Saturday. I was (still am) at a loss for words. I thank you very much, you don't know what this means to me.

    When you break down, it's comforting to realise how the world builds you back up again, even with something as frivolous as pennies.

    Every corner I turn carries new hope.

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