Continued from page 1

Frank Beamer, the school’s football coach, was asked to talk to the families of the victims and you could tell by talking to him afterward how affected he was by what had happened.

There simply aren’t the proper words to describe the pain those families felt.

Please, I asked repeatedly, please do not let something like this happen again.

But it has happened again. It keeps happening. I’ve pretty much lost hope that it will ever stop happening.

We’ll try to carry on with our lives as best we can — and sports have helped with that after past events of this nature — but that becomes more difficult with each tragedy.

I’m reminded of a quote I got from a jockey whose career was derailed by injuries. He said a rider starts out with a heart the size of a boulder. Every time he hits the dirt, a piece gets chipped off. Eventually, he said, you’re riding around with a heart the size of a pebble.

That’s kind of how I feel after so many of these incidents. Maybe it isn’t my heart, or maybe it is. Maybe it’s deeper, part of my soul. Maybe it is the part of my brain where hope is stored.

Whatever, I’m pretty much down to a pebble.