Wayne and I were coming home on Tuesday, I think it was. The flag at the fire station up the street from our house was at half staff, which had us wondering who the heck died.
I got home and there was a bulletin from a woman I knew when I lived in the valley. It was titled simply "Shayne."
Well, Jenny was a lot younger than me, so I probably didn't know Shayne. I know I didn't know any guys who spelled their name like that.
I checked out the bulletin anyway, and holy shit. It was a guy with whom I graduated from high school. Shane Wyrsch. I never knew Shane very well. In fact, I don't think he crossed my mind since 1989 when I walked out of my graduation ceremony. I don't have anything bad to say about him. He seemed quiet. Unlike a lot of the football players at my school, he wasn't an asshole.
He was hit, in his car, head on by a drunk driver. He was a US Forest Service Law Enforcement Officer who was on his way home from a meeting. the accident occured around 10:20pm on Highway 410 near Buckley-- not far from where I live now. The accident wreckage was pretty gruesome. He was married to a woman named Zoe and has two little boys.
So sad. So unexpected, as always.
In email exchange, my friend Renae and I were adding up how many of our former classmates have died since we graduated (Mount Si High School 1989). We count four that we know of:
Derek Hastings-- I want to say that was in December 1989. Car accident. I adored Derek; his funeral was so awfully sad.
Travis Reed-- He and I moved to The Valley the same year. He dressed like Don Johnson in Miami Vice. Our lockers were right next to each other in the chaos that was sophomore hall. He was odd, funny, and like a brother to me. I heard he aquired HIV and died of AIDS, but I don't know if that is true. By the time I heard of his death, we had most definitely lost touch. I have great memories of him, though.
Jeff Roberts-- I didn't really know him at all. He was super quiet. Tall. Big. He seemed nice, but we didn't cross social circles much. He died in a car accident, too. I think another one of our classmates was driving, but I don't remember who.
And now Shane Wyrsch.
We're fortunate to have only lost 4 since 1989 (to be sure, there may be more that we're not yet aware of). The Mount Si Class of 2002 lost 4 classmates before graduation. I used to babysit one of those kids, who was actually killed in a hit and run. The driver in the hit and run? A guy I graduated with.
Our twenty year high school reunion will be in two years. Two years. How many memorial photos will we have on display by then? We only had just over a hundred people in our graduating class.
Here's a picture of Shane that is all over the media.
ADD (3.27.2007): I found an obituary for Shane online and an online guestbook that can be signed.