Like many of you, I’m a regular CDN reader and occasional contributor via comments and the rare post. I logged on this morning expecting to see a story from Scott reporting on the Night Out block parties. There would definitely be pictures, probably reports for a few different parties, and perhaps a small aside about the newshound snagging a spare hot dog.
I was not expecting the headline “Matt Durham, 1979-2009.” CDguy’s tragically unexpected death was the lead news; Scott’s beautiful brotherly tribute was the story; and four dozen and counting condolences and tributes from readers were the beginning of the epilogue.
I don’t know much about the Durham brothers. I didn’t even know there were brothers at CDN world headquarters until a few minutes ago. I’ve met Scott a few times at the Bottleneck, and I’m pretty sure I’ve never met Matt. But I’m crying now at this news. Why? Because Scott and Matt are both an important part of my weekday life. I log onto their work almost daily. CDNews connects me to my neighbors and is part of my neighborhood. Because I admire their work ethic, their commitment to a new kind of community organizing, and their wit. And maybe because I have a beloved sibling myself, and Scott’s loving tribute did what his best stories on here do – it made me stop and think about how we’re all connected.
So what does a community do in the face of such a loss of one of its members? It steps in to support those close and to honor the lost.
CDN readers, can we do this?
If a close neighbor or friend could find out any specifics about how we could tangibly help Scott and Ray, that would be great. Certainly ones among us could cut grass, walk the dog, bring over food, or do other tasks to make their lives a little easier right now. Given the affection that people seem to hold for this crew, I imagine and hope that those closest will be doing these things. If there’s a need beyond the close circle, please let us know.
For the wider community, let’s think of this tragedy as a call for stepping up our own contributions to the CDNews. The best tribute I can think of is contributing to the site with extra vigor for the next few days and weeks. Post your NNO pictures. Follow up on a neighborhood story and write a real article. Take the time to note things happening around the CD. Perhaps someone out there could even serve as our scanner reporter for a few days. In Texas and around US, a death in the family often means a flood of casseroles from the friends so that the grieving have something to eat and feed others. Contributions could be our casserole dishes.
These are just the thoughts that came immediately to mind. Certainly you all have others. What can we do as support and tribute?
Thanks for reading! -Jennie