Letter: Aftermath of death
November 29, 2016
On Nov. 6, our hearts were irrevocably broken when our beloved Trent left this world. The circumstances surrounding his death were confusing and complex, and we, his family, were in shock and disbelief that he was, in fact, gone. Naïve as it sounds, we trusted those in positions of authority in law enforcement, the media and the school district to protect the privacy of our 13-year-old while his death was under investigation. Instead, beginning the day after his death, rumors and hearsay were reported as facts, as “leaders” in these sectors openly discussed details of his death without any evidence or concern for how their actions might affect Trent’s memory, his surviving family members, or his many friends. The consequences of the irresponsible and reprehensible violations of privacy and ethical decency displayed by these “leaders” have been devastating to all who loved Trent.
The investigation has lasted almost three weeks, during which time we all have been trying to cope with the unbearable reality of life on Earth without our boy. It is no surprise to those who knew and loved him that the manner of Trent’s death was not classified as suicide. There was no evidence to suggest in any way that he was toying with death or playing a dangerous game or that he wanted to end his life. Trent’s death was classified as undetermined. We respectfully ask that if you feel compelled to talk about, write about or counsel youth on the dangers of any of these aforementioned theories, you do not in any way associate them with Trent’s death. The decent thing to do would be to retract and make amends for presenting theories and speculation as fact and linking them to a case involving a minor while his case was still under investigation. Trent strived to do the right thing in all areas of his life, and it just seems extra hurtful that those in positions meant to protect the privacy and dignity of young people in our community and schools failed to do the right thing for him.
We may never know exactly how or why this tragedy has happened. What we do know is that Trent, like all human beings, particularly children, deserved better than what these “leaders” in our community and others who thrive on gossip gave him. We know that those responsible for the pain and suffering we have incurred after losing Trent will neither fully understand nor take responsibility for their actions. We know that no one will ever comprehend how immensely proud we are to be Trent’s family, or the intensity and depth of love we have for him. Most importantly, we know that Trent was a miracle and a blessing beyond measure and we thank God for each of the 4,877 precious days of his life.
The family of Trent Goscha