Thursday, February 01, 2007

Horrible Morning in Portsmouth City Park

My partner returned from her morning walk in the park; she was obviously "shook up." She has made many friends on her morning walk. This morning one of her "park friends" disappeared. She told me that a father and his 16 year old daughter--she runs track--come to the park in the morning so she can train. The father was frantic, His daughter had disappeared.

She was running around the cemetery and her father was "timing" her. It usually takes her 1 1/2 minutes to go around the cemetery. It had been more than five minutes. The father remembered there had been a red pick up truck in the cemetery when his daughter started to run....the red pick up truck is gone. My friend alerted the park police and the father had called the Portsmouth Police to report the incident.

We live in one of those "peaceful" neighborhoods where it is rare for "bad things to happen...." When I moved here 27 years ago an elderly neighbor told me the "only" bad thing that had ever happened in our neighborhood occurred one day when a woman was raped in her home.

In the 27 years that I have lived here we have had one violent crime that was well publicized. A brother and sister were unloading groceries from their car in the late afternoon/early evening. They were not aware that earlier police had interrupted a robbery at a pizza hut a few miles away. The "robbers" kidnapped them and had them drive down to North Carolina. The brother was shot and killed in a NC convenience store after telling his sister to run because he was going to make a scene to try to save them.....

And now this. I feel for that father who for a moment was not "watching" his daughter run....maybe he was looking at the stop watch...maybe he was thinking of what awaited him at work....but for a few moments....something happened and his daughter is now "disappeared." I pray he won't feel guilty for being human....who watches someone every second?

Hopefully this will turn out to be "nothing." But my partner doesn't think this is the case....she said the girl and her father are obviously close and she does not see "running away" as something this girl would do. I wonder if someone has been watching this father and daughter over time and planned to do this wretched thing. I feel for the frantic father, the mother who has now been told, and for a possibly terrified 16 year old girl. I pray that this horrible morning ends up having a "happy ending."

I hesitate to send this post out. Mainly because I am disgusted how the Corporate Media uses 'the bad things happen" to hide news of importance from the American people. News about issues that seriously affect our lives and, if we had enough advance notice, we could do something about these issues.

But when it happens in "my" neighborhood I want to tell the story so that others might be a little more careful today...because sometimes "bad things happen." This possible tragedy won't be "used" to hide the crimes of the rich and powerful who attempt to use our government for personal gain.


Eileen Levandoski said...

So what happened?

Mosquito said...

I've been trying to find out.....I'm hoping my friend runs into the girl and her dad soon...but since she was never reported "missing" she was "obviously" found.

I'm also "curious"..bzz...If I ever do find out I'll definitely put it in here under comments....

It's one of those "minor" disruptions in a neighborhood it seems....which makes for a happy ending....;)

Eileen Levandoski said...

In the summer of 1998, my three were 2, 4 and 6. We lived in a big house on 10 acres in the Blue Ridge Mountains off a private dirt road. I was very involved in a volunteer project that put me at my computer and/or on the phone for 6 to 8 hours every day. My office was in the upstairs loft that overlooked the rest of the house and had floor to ceiling windows for me to look out to a large portion of my property.

One day I was working upstairs. My 2-year-old was napping in her crib. My 6-year-old had a friend over. He, his friend and my 4-year-old were playing outside in the backyard where I could easily see them. I later watched as they walked to the end of the meadow. I then saw them disappear into the woods just beyond the meadow. A few minutes later I saw the 4-year-old re-emerge from the woods and walk towards the house. I asked about the other 2 when she came in and she said they were going to my son's "fort" to play. I decided to go check on them about 10-15 minutes later. Just as I was walking through the meadow, I saw a white van stop on our road that runs parallel to the meadow 500 yards away. I had never seen the van before. It stopped for about 3 minutes then continued on. I started calling for my son. I got to the fort and they were not there. I then started panicking, thinking the worst with that van stopping. So I ran back to the house and got in my car and drove down the road. By that time the van had turned around and was coming back the other direction. Before it could pass me I veared on a diagonal across the road forcing him to stop as he couldn't get by me. I got out of my car and he got out of his. He of course asked me what my problem was. I told him I saw him stop and I told him that I also didn't know where my 2 children were. He then offered to allow me to search his van. He explained that he had stopped for a snake crossing the road. I still opted to search his van. I opened the side door wondering what I would do if I saw my 2 kids in it and also thinking that if they were in there how he'd probably hit me over the head. He was a painter and had all these tarps in the van which I padded down looking for hard lumps of 6-year-old bodies. There was nothing and I apologized to the guy and let him go. He said he didn't mind at all, that he was a dad, and would do the same as me.

The kids eventually re-emerged telling me that they were purposely ignoring me and hiding from me. Still shaken by the whole thing, I called my mother in hopes of feeling better. And she told me to be proud of myself for reacting the way I did. It was a horrible, horrible feeling thinking that this was capable of happening. I just couldn't let that guy go by not knowing for sure. I have never again given anybody the benefit of the doubt when it comes to my kids. I've always been one to think the best of people, but this incident changed me forever. I just can't imagine how horrible it must be for parents whose children get nabbed.

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