Gone Too Soon: Jordan Davis at 19

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Jordan Davis would have been celebrating his 19th birthday today.

Instead, at 17, he was gunned down after a random white guy at a Florida gas station flipped his privileged lid when Davis and his friends refused to turn down their loud music.  Dunn claims Davis brandished a shotgun, so Dunn grabbed his pistol and fired 10 rounds into the car, killing Davis.

Police never found a shotgun, or any other weapon, in the boys’ car.

On Saturday night, Michael Dunn was found guilty of three counts of second-degree attempted murder, but not of first-degree premeditated murder, in the killing of Davis. Dunn faces more than 60 years in prison.

RIP Jordan Davis.

 

At 19 years old, I was a junior in college, studying for the GREs and begging my parents to either let me move off campus with my friends or study abroad in London. They said “no” to the move. “Yes” to London (which I wasn’t expecting) so I was contemplating if that’s what I actually wanted to do. All I really wanted was to get out of the dorms.

I’d decided I wanted to be “a writer” because at 19 I thought I could speak things into existence and that’s all it really took. Poof! As a second semester junior, I took my first journalism class.

Everyone older kept telling me “these are the best days of your life” and I couldn’t wait to graduate and get my life started. “Start” meant moving to NYC and attending NYU. I wanted to be grown. I had no idea how to make my dreams happen in the “real world” that loomed ahead.

I went to the club (a lot) on Thursday and Sunday nights (aka college night) and walked to the car sweaty– and piled in with 5 other women– because I was trying to keep up with the B-more girls dancing to house music. I had the moves, not the stamina. Then maybe I’d go home and write a 5 page essay with minimal typos.

I studied hard, I ki-ki’d with my roommates until the wee hours of the morning, nearly every night. I argued with my parents. I played my music loud, I drove my car too fast. I couldn’t hold my liquor, which I was too young (and illegal) to be drinking anyway.

I didn’t know it, but I was laying the foundation for everything I would accomplish professionally.

In my downtime, I daydreamed a lot– about the next boy, the next party, the next exam/paper, the next Spring Break…. because I took it for granted there would always be a … “next.” The world was laid out as a canvas before me, I just had to figure out what I wanted to add to it.

Jordan Davis deserved to have afternoons of day dreams, nights of parties, an opportunity to leave his mark and a lifetime of “nexts” too.

It feels horrible to see RIP before a 19 year old’s name. Geez.
What did you do at 19?

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This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. There is no doubt I was playing my music loud at 19 and still do, depending if my song is on the radio, lol

    Funny thing is when I’m driving and another driver is playing their music too loud, I just roll up the windows… or wait for the light to change and roll out.

    Imagine that!

  2. vdewitt42 says:

    At 19, I was stationed in boot camp in South Carolina, daydreaming about getting through the next stage of the Marine Corps. Graduating boot camp and excited about trips abroad, although my first duty station was North Carolina. Death was never apart of my imagination, even when I was in a minor accident on base.

    Jordan’s parents should be celebrating his life right now, not mourning.

    Bravo on such an excellent commentary.

  3. humblepaula says:

    At 19 I had just graduated from CUNY and excited about moving to Atlanta & sharing an apartment with my bff. I too rode around with friends that had the base thumping. There was no need for anyone young or old to take anyone’s life over loud music. Just a pure “D” shame.

  4. audrastyles says:

    At age 19 I was having a baby but still enjoying the life of a young adult. Still enjoying my friends, freedom and being grown. Now my children are 25 and 21 and its more frightening than ever. Dunn had no regard for young lifes and in all honesty I don’t even think Dunn reacted the way he did just because they were black, I think he is just an evil, mean and hateful person with no regard for anyones life.

  5. Boobie says:

    At 19 , the hip hop age was just emerging and Djing was on the rise. A lot of in the parks and school yards listening to the Djs rocking the mixes and spitting on the mikes. I to always thought of what was coming next in relationships, friends and so forth. Not really thinking so much about the seriousness of how to live my future, but more concerned about the right now. I am truly sorry to hear about this young man who was taken away from his loved ones so abruptly and tragically. He should have had many more nights of hanging out with friends and blasting his music. Sadly we hear all the time about the loss of our young black men. I have a son 24yrs old and one 32 and I pray for them everyday, and I pray for all there friends because what affects one affects all. I’m glad his murderer will be charged with something because we all know it could have gone the same way as Trayvon Martin.

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