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Hugs, laughter and longing

You left us 2 years ago. 730 days ago our hearts were broken. Your Dad and I miss you. Avery and Connor miss you! Poppy & MiMi miss you! Jade misses you! We miss hearing your voice, your laughter, our many conversations about sports or work. Your presence in our kitchen preparing your meals. The smell of laundry full of your work out clothes and your cologne. Your dad misses your tight hugs, luring you by asking you to pop his back. You would always squeeze him tight and goose him immediately after! He knew how strong you’d gotten and could no longer fend off your tickling him! You both would laugh so hard as you held each other.

I miss waking up and knowing you were across the hall. From my pillow I can see directly into your room where you slept. I miss our conversations when you would come home and tell me about your day. Just a couple of weeks before you left us, you came home, I was in bed but awake waiting to make sure you got home. Your Dad was out of town working. You came up to our bedroom. You began telling me about your day. You sprawled out on your dads side of the bed. We talked for several minutes and before I knew it you were snoring. Still in your clothes and shoes. I laid and looked at you and just smiled. What a beautiful young man you had grown to be! I awoke the next morning and you hadn’t moved. I knew you were exhausted. I also knew you’d wake up and have no memory of falling asleep in our bed! You did wake up and we both laughed. I will cherish that memory forever! You were still my baby even at 6’ 1”! We never stop longing for more of these moments. 😔 We love and miss you beyond words our beautiful boy. 🙏🏼💜

Birthdays Aren’t The Same

Pierce and I at Cheesecake Factory for my birthday back in 2016

A few days ago, I turned 30. It’s taken a few days to process everything, but as per usual, everyone tends to make a big deal out of milestone birthdays. After all, it isn’t every day you turn three decades old.

Normally, women tend to fear or loathe getting older. The gray hairs, the wrinkles and everything that comes with getting older. This year though, and because you aren’t here, Pierce, I had a lot of complex emotions surrounding getting another year older that had nothing to do with my appearance or other people’s perceptions of me or the fact that I’m on the far end of the millennial scale.

I realized, in all the planning and deciding where to eat, what we should do to celebrate…that I didn’t really feel like celebrating. That I didn’t want to get another year older if you couldn’t. That it wasn’t fair.

Today was when all my emotions came to a head and I just cried. Other small inconveniences and things being piled on my already full plate just boiled over and it finally caught up with me that I was upset.

I miss you, Pierce. You should be here. It isn’t fair that you won’t get to turn 30. To own a house and make it your own. To start a promising personal training business. To be here with your family and everyone who loved you so much.

Your case is now back in court and we also had to go to a hearing last week.

The man who caused your wreck, Fransisco Eduardo Franco Cambrany, is trying to have his charges appealed and removed from his record. The attorney defending him is taking the case, pro bono. What makes this frustrating is that, if the charges are removed from Fransisco Eduardo’s record, he could never be tried for your wreck and what he did. It would be as if, on paper, he didn’t cause your accident and tear our family apart.

I wish more people understood what kind of dangerous precedence this sets for cases that involve illegal immigration. What precedence it sets for law and order. It frustrates me that some of those involved in these kinds of cases would rather defend a criminal than help victims and would rather help them break the law than uphold it.

To those people, the ones who believe they are being some sort of social justice heroes, I wish you could understand the continued grief and agony you cause my family. To you, it is just another battle ground to prove some sort of point. To myself and my family, it is everything. It was Pierce’s life. And his life and his actions mattered.

I wish people could put themselves in our shoes. And I also have to wonder…why does Fransisco Eduardo’s criminal standing matter here in America so much if he is in Mexico, as he should be? Because per the case and the law, if he has reentered our country, he should be tried in a court of law and present himself.

I believe in forgiveness. But I also believe in standing accountable for our actions. Pierce, you always were the bigger person in situations like this. I’ve been praying about it and praying that justice is served and even if it isn’t, that I will be okay with it.

Or, if not okay with it, that I will be able to keep going and continue fighting for what I know is right.

I love and miss you, Pierce. I wish you could have been with all of us the other night. We went to Cheesecake Factory and I thought about you while we were there. You would have gotten key lime, your favorite, and we would have all been joking around. We love and miss you so much.

Your Big Sister,


Your “Birth” Day

8,177 days we were blessed by your presence. 584 days we’ve had to endure your absence. When you entered our lives 24 years ago we knew our world had changed forever! We were now outnumbered! That was an understatement!

Your due date was August 14th but you didn’t want to wait and I have to say I was relieved! We were so ready to meet you! Avery and Connor were too! On August 4th your Dad was working a 24 hr. Shift at the fire Dept. He called around dinner time to check on us, as he always did. I mentioned I was having contractions and I would let him know if it was time to call the doctor. Not long after hanging up I decided to call. The doctor said to go to the hospital. Since you were my 3rd child she advised me not to wait. I called Your Dad back to tell him and he nervously said I will be right there! A few minutes go by and your Dad calls back. As he was rushing to get his things and head home he realized he had ridden his bicycle into work that day. He had to get the chief on duty to drive him home. (You always laughed when we joked about him doubling me on his bike to deliver you! Lol) We arrived at the hospital around 8:30 p.m. and you made your entrance at 11:26 p.m. You weighed 7 lbs. and 6 oz. and were 21 inches long. You were a combination of Avery and Connor but already with your own personality. You completed our family and brought us so much joy. We watched you grow into a loving, kind, compassionate, faithful, active and determined young man. There’s not a day that goes by that we don’t think of you and all our precious memories with you and wonder what you would be doing if you were here.

Pierce, you made us so proud and we miss you beyond words everyday. We love you and miss you today, your 24th Birthday 😔😢💜. Happy Heavenly Birthday our precious boy!

What if……………….

I’ve been unable to put my thoughts and feelings on paper. The Christmas holidays followed by the one year date of your leaving this earth have been very hard. Very hard to relive our last days with you, our last hugs, conversations, photos, voice mails, texts and our last I Love You’s. Our grief swallows us at times. Even though I know better, my mind goes toward all the what if’s and whys. What if you could have survived? What if they could have breathed life back into you? It seems a very selfish thing to ask because I know your injuries would’ve meant unbearable pain. My mind knows this but my heart wants you here any way I could have you.

My heart and mind both know you wouldn’t have wanted to live with mental or physical limitations or to have been dependent on others. You were always very independent and strong willed. We had to get a copy of Dr. Dobsons “Strong Willed Child” before your 2nd Birthday. I prayed God would use your strong will in a positive way. It wasn’t always easy and you tested our patience at times!Sports gave you an outlet for your endless energy, determination and strong will. God used sports and the brotherhood of teammates and coaches to draw you closer to him. God knew where he could best reach you and guide you. On a field or a court! He surrounded you with wonderful friends, teammates, coaches and teachers who loved you and more importantly they loved the Lord! We are forever grateful for the positive influence and guidance they provided.

As you entered adulthood you were focused on staying fit and eating healthy. No matter how bad an influence we were in this area you were determined. You prepared your meals in advance and planned ahead. You even packed meals to travel for your FEDEX training in Charlotte! We thought you were nuts! You could eat anywhere you wanted and use your perdiem from FEDEX! You also mapped out where the YMCA was from your hotel. You we’re committed! You journaled everything from your workouts, your meals and your thoughts. Your last entry was Dec. 29, 2018 😔

Pierce you were in the best shape. I have no doubt you would’ve fought through anything if you could’ve. I also have no doubt you would’ve been devastated had anything happened to Jade or others that night. For reasons I may never understand this side of Heaven, God needed you with him. He needed a strong willed, energetic, determined Angel!

This season and every season Pierce we miss you so much it hurts. We love you and long to hold you one day soon! Love Mom & Dad

Proverbs 3:5-6

Reality hurts

365 days. It hurts to say it. As each day passes reality sets in. It doesn’t get easier. We’ve spent much of this past year going through the motions. On auto pilot. Drag ourselves out of bed, get dressed, go to work, come home, go to bed, repeat. We feel 100 years old. We probably look it too. We tell ourselves we will do better. We will try harder for you, Pierce. You would fuss at us for not taking better care of ourselves. You would have completed your personal trainer certification and expected us to take your knowledge and advice to get in better shape. We want to honor you and how you lived your life but the grief and longing for you weighs heavy. When they buried you a part of us was buried with you. Our joy, our will and our desire went with you. Continuing to live is a struggle because you cannot. Some days we try to convince ourselves we will do better. It’s one thing to say it. It’s another thing completely to act on it. How can we enjoy life when you’re not able to? How?

Beginning a new year. Another year without you seems unthinkable, undoable and painful. Our hearts physically hurt just at the thought of having to keep going but we know we must. We try to remember you are not longing for us or your life here. Why would you? Heaven couldn’t compare and you would never choose to return to this World! Your dad and I are selfish. We want you here with us! Avery and Connor need and want you here! Our hearts will never understand Gods timing. 😔 At least not this side of Heaven…..

Pierce we love and miss you so very much! You were a wonderful son, brother, grandson and friend. We cherish every moment and memory spent with you 🙏🏼💜✝️🕊

Christmas Memories

I knew these days would be hard. Many wonderful memories but still overshadowed by a very painful one. Dec. 29, 2018. I had just packed away our Christmas tree and ornaments when there was a knock on the door. The worst day of our lives…… Pierce was gone.

So many emotions as I got the tree, ornaments and decorations out . Decorating a grave and a tree this year. At this point last year Pierce was living his last days. Making his last memories. Making plans he would never fulfill.

Every Christmas since our children were born we’ve bought them an ornament. They each had a Hallmark ornament marking age 1-5. Then they were able to pick out a favorite each year. Avery took hers when she married and places them on their tree. Connor will use his the first time this year as he and Emma put up their first tree together. Pierce and Jade didn’t get an opportunity to see their first Christmas tree together. I often wonder what will happen to his things we’ve held on to all these years? Will Avery and Connor keep them? I imagine some things they will, especially his ornaments. They remember our trips to pick their ornaments out. They remember each other’s and enjoy remembering why they chose them.

I had hoped when I died the three of them would reminisce over them and enjoy remembering and laughing about their trips to pick them out and sharing Christmas memories. It shouldn’t be this way. Pierce should be here. It makes me so sad to know Avery and Connor will never have a chance to grow old with their baby brother and share more holidays together. One day when they have children I’m sure they will tell them about their uncle Pierce and what he meant to them. 😔🙏🏼💜🕊

Our tree is decorated with Cardinals this year. There’s been a beautiful Cardinal living in our back yard for the last year. He has brought comfort to us and always seems to appear when we are struggling. A few times he has sat perched on the basketball goal. (Everyone who knows Pierce knows how much time he spent shooting hoops). The tree turned out beautifully thanks to my Aunt Sandra. We just happened to see ribbon with a cardinal and we both knew it was exactly what we should use!

A True American Hero

It has taken me some time to write this. This man is named Leroy. He is from the Dominican Republic and works at Arlington National Cemetery. We visited on 9/11 and as we were waiting on the tram that runs through the cemetery near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, he said something I will never forget.

As we stood there, lined up, Leroy asked our group, “Who here is a veteran? If you could, please step forward.”

My grandfather, Poppy, was a Marine, and though he did not see battle, he was stationed many places all over the world in the 1960’s and 1970’s. He was tentative about stepping forward. I kept trying to get him to go forward, but he shook his head.

“I didn’t fight,” he whispered to me.

I think he was showing respect for those who had, but it made me sad. Poppy served his country too…but I also understood his feelings.

Leroy stood in front of those veterans who had come forward and he asked them what wars they had fought in. Some said World War II. The Korean War. The Vietnam War. Desert Storm. So many different answers from so many different women and men.

“Can the families of these brave soldiers step forward?”

It was at this point, that Leroy asked my grandfather, “You were a Marine?”

He must have overheard our exchange in the quiet atmosphere of the somber cemetery.

My grandfather nodded, and Leroy said, “You served your country. You and your family come up here. You belong here.”

And then Leroy walked in front of us all and gave the most incredible speech to us, one I will never forget. One that made us all cry.

I will try to do it justice and write it here as best I can.

“My name is Leroy. I am from the Dominican Republic. Over 30 years ago, I came here to your wonderful country of America. I came here for opportunities. I came here to better myself, to make something of myself.

When I came to America, I got a college education. I came here the right way and it took a very long time. I got my education because of all of you. Had it not been for your sacrifices and your good deeds, I could not have done this. Because you all fought in wars, because you stepped forward, not just today, but all those years ago, you made a path for me. Some of your friends may have perished in the same wars you fought; they might not have been afforded the same opportunities as me, but because of them, I was able to get a college education. To live here, a free man, in a country that values freedom.

I came here all those years ago and fell in love with your country. It is why I became a citizen.

Now, I get to come here every day and work in this national cemetery. I retired several years ago. I do not need the money. The job does not pay me very well, but still, I come here, so I can look as many veterans in the eyes and tell you all…thank you. For your service. For your sacrifices.

I am older now and will eventually go back to my home country, but I will never forget Americans and what you all have done for me and my life. Thank you for what you fought for, all those years ago.”

While Leroy had given his speech, we had all been earth shatteringly silent.

Here was a man from another country, an immigrant who came to America all those years ago, who did not even need this job in Arlington National Cemetery, yet he came and lovingly worked hours in the hot sun and elements…to be able to say thank you to the soldiers who fought for his freedom.

Tears were rolling down all of our cheeks. We were speechless.

This man could not have known that we would be there that day, that we would be in that group.

Leroy came to America and gained his citizenship. Even though he did not fight in any of our wars, he understood the sacrifices that came along with them. He understood our laws and what makes America great.

Listening to this man from a sea away, the Dominican Republic, was humbling. It made us feel a love and understanding for him that was indescribable. Leroy understood what America is about.

America is a country of immigrants, it is true. At our core, we have all come from different places, far flung on the map, to end up here and contribute to our country with values, hard work and perseverance.

Leroy exemplified everything that an immigrant is, but more importantly, a good man is and an American is.

He came here to learn and receive an education, and valued our country so much, that he obtained his citizenship.

Though my brother was killed by an illegal alien, I do not hate Fransisco Eduardo. I forgive him. I only wish he had valued our country the same way Leroy does. I only wish he could have come here and joined us, not hidden in the shadows. I only wish he had taken personal responsibility for his actions.

Illegal immigration is a problem our country has faced for many years.

Our system is broken and it is an issue that will not be solved overnight.

But I can tell you one thing—

As I stood in the middle of Arlington National Cemetery on 9/11, a day full of sadness and remembrance, surrounded by stark, white tombstones, crying over the words of someone who had been a stranger only 5 minutes before, it made me realize…I want to be a Leroy.

Parenting, protecting and praying.

Since our three children entered this world we have tried to protect them. Protect them physically and spiritually. We made our share of mistakes but we took our job as parents very seriously. God had entrusted and blessed us to raise these three wonderfully different little humans! Some days I did wonder if God thought it through or did he just have a really good sense of humor! Nevertheless, these little darlings were ours and we would give it our best! Our best of course meant putting their needs first. Feeding, clothing, disciplining, loving and protecting them. Clothing wasn’t to hard until they grew older. Clothes were more expensive and they seemed to grow overnight! Feeding not too bad initially either. They grew, their appetites grew and they brought friends with appetites! Disciplining was a challenge. Each required a different approach or form of disciple. Some required it more frequently! Loving them was by far the easiest and whether they knew it or not there was love involved in all we did. They might not have realized we loved them therefore we made them eat vegetables. We loved them therefore we made them wear a coat during days we thought it called for it. We loved them even as we punished them. We most certainly loved them by protecting them. Protecting them by not allowing them to go to homes we didn’t know the parents. Protected them by making them wear a helmet when riding a bike or scooter. Protected them by getting their vaccinations and taking them for regular check-ups as well as when they were sick. Protected them by being involved in their lives and getting to know their friends. Protecting them by taking them to church and teaching them about Jesus and praying they would accept Jesus in their hearts and seek him always. Basically, our goal as parents was to do our very best to keep these beautiful gifts healthy and alive. At least that’s what we tried to do.

Our youngest son, Pierce entered our world just before midnight on August 4, 1996. He wasn’t due until the 14th but he and I were both ready. Or so we thought! He was healthy and made his entrance rather quickly and loudly! All those months spent cooped up in my belly listening to his two siblings, he had been taking notes! He must have decided he would give Avery and Connor a taste of their own medicine. Pierce was loud and he really liked to be heard usually when Avery and Connor were trying to go to bed! It lasted a few weeks but he eventually settled in and got everyone trained! Lol. We used to feel bad for Pierce because being the third child meant he was dragged to lots of school programs, basketball courts and baseball, softball, football and soccer fields. He definitely preferred being outside and anywhere there was a ball involved. Probably why he was never without some type of ball from then on! He had a natural ability and enjoyed any sport. To be slightly chubby during his middle school years he was agile but mostly he was always 100% involved! He was never distracted or daydreaming. Never halfhearted attempts. He was physically and mentally in to it! I guess that’s why we enjoyed watching him so much and why we allowed him to get involved in so many different sports. We knew he would give it his all! We also knew he had the ability to leave it on the field. He didn’t dwell on losses or mistakes and he didn’t gloat on wins and scores. I never really realized what an accomplishment that truly was! Both the Witts and Corcorans can be competitive so he could have easily been genetically robbed of good sportsmanship! Lol (We do have a few sore losers on both sides of our families!! Not naming names!Ha!)

Even after high school graduation Pierce continued to keep us busy. He decided to run a couple of marathons and we really enjoyed seeing him accomplish his goals. He was still living at home, working full time and had decided (with our encouragement) to save money and buy a house. Not to waste money on rent. After all, he basically had the house to himself. He had made Connor’s bedroom into his workout/computer room and Avery’s room was there for his friends to come whenever they wanted. There were many mornings we would wake up to several hairy, smelly bodies crashed in our den. It was a little awkward. After all they were grown men now. But these weren’t strangers. They were his high school friends and just like our own! We had grown to love these young men and Pierce loved spending time with them. These friendships are priceless.

We have many wonderful memories. 22+ years we must cling to. On December 29, 2018 our ability to make memories with Pierce was taken from us. At 6:33 p.m. Pierce’s car was hit head-on as an unlicensed, uninsured illegal alien crossed the double yellow centerline on Chapman Highway in our hometown of Knoxville, Tennessee. The impact of the crash forced his 2017 Honda Civic into the path of two other vehicles sending his car across the highway to rest on a grassy embankment. Pierce’s girlfriend Jade was in the passenger seat. The illegal immigrant causing this multi-vehicle crash sat in his truck uninjured as others rushed to Pierce and Jade’s aid. We are told as they reached Jade she continually yelled at them to “Get him!” “Just get him!” meaning Pierce. Jade works in the University of Tennessee Hospital trauma unit so she knew time was precious and he was gravely injured. Pierce was pulled from the wreckage by many who stopped to help including the young man, Jordan, whose truck Pierce’s car was forced into its path. Pierce was pronounced dead at 7:08 p.m. We had failed to protect one of our precious gifts……

Jade suffered a broken nose,ribs, vertebrae and a broken heart. 😔. Amazingly, no others were injured. DJ was working in Memphis. I was home watching a football game with my Dad. Our doorbell rang and when I opened the door DJ’s boss, Chief Sharp was there with 2 other men. He asked to come in. My thoughts immediately went to DJ but it hadn’t been that long since we had spoken. Then Chief Sharp said Pierce had been in an accident …….. and he didn’t make it. I began to cry but I don’t remember much after hearing those words except immediately remembering my father was in the next room and thinking how was I going to tell him? Should I tell him? He’s going to know when he sees me. He came when he heard voices at the door. I think I blurted it out. My body or words were no longer mine. I must be having a bad dream! This isn’t real! I needed to get to Pierce. I had to be with him! He’s alone!!! Then I remembered Jade. They said she was going to be okay. I asked about others. They said no one else was hurt. I had no idea what happened. If Pierce had pulled in front of someone or what happened. I was thankful to hear no others were hurt. I knew I couldn’t call DJ and tell him over the phone while he was alone in a motel room hundreds of miles away. I asked his family to get someone to him so he wouldn’t be alone when he was told. The KFD Chaplain took my dad to get my mother and bring them to UTMC. I called our son in law Tim and told him to bring Avery to UTMC and what had happened. Connor was working in Nashville. Again, I didn’t want him to hear while alone. So his boss went to his room and told him to call us.

We arrived at UTMC. Avery and Tim were there waiting. We went in the trauma unit and our lives have never been the same. Seeing Pierce so very still. Intubated. A gash on the left side of his forehead. Grass in his hair. His ears blue. Our baby! Gone! I stroked his hair. Rubbed his face. Touched his strong shoulders. Kissed his forehead. Told him I loved him. Told him his dad loved him. Told him his brother loved him. Told him how sorry I was. Connor called as I was stroking Pierce’s head and I had to tell him his baby brother was gone. My heart was breaking for him to know I couldn’t hold him as he heard the worst words his young heart had known.

Many family arrived. Some stood back and sobbed. Others came to touch him and love him. His friends filled the room. Some still in shock, some sobbing and hugging each other. I don’t remember how long but Avery and I went to Jade. She was pitiful. Her tears. Her little body banged up. Her nose swollen. Her eyes overflowing with tears. I will never forget her eyes and the pain pouring from them. She wanted to go to Pierce so they got her in a wheelchair and we took her. It broke my heart to hear her sobs. Her young heart breaking……

Jade’s mother, Tonya was on her way from Smyrna, Tennessee. A 2/3 hour drive. My heart hurt for her mother. Trying to get to her baby. Her only child. Her miracle baby born prematurely weighing 1 lb.

We stayed in the trauma unit for hours but knew we had to say goodbye. My mind knew he was gone and my faith told me where he was but my heart just couldn’t bear to leave him. How could I? I went back to Jade. Her mother had arrived. We were meeting for the first time. She had met Pierce a couple of times. He had just spent Christmas Day with her family. We hugged. It was the hug of perfect strangers but I felt her deep hurt for me. She was taking some of my pain in that hug. Even as she too was hurting. Hurting for her precious daughter. Her daughters little body and her broken heart.

Many of DJ’s coworkers stood at the door of the trauma unit. They stayed until Pierce’s body was removed. Such an amazing gesture but not surprising from DJ’s firefighter brothers & sisters.

We went home to wait on DJ and Connor to get home. DJ was being shuttled across the state by firefighters. From Memphis to Nashville to Knoxville. Connor was being driven by a coworker and his friend Matt met them to bring him home. Connor arrived around 3:00 am and DJ about 6:00 am. Each time we all embraced and sobbed. I don’t think it truly seemed real to any of us. The next days are pretty much a blur. We made Pierce’s funeral arrangements. Avery wrote his obituary. We all decided on a beautiful wooden casket. We received friends on New Years Day. We hugged and cried for over 3 hours as photos of Pierce’s life scrolled on the screen above. Pierce’s Bible teacher from Grace Christian Academy, Dr. Tony Pointer performed his service. Avery and Poppy shared their memories. Connor’s friend Matt sang. We continued to receive friends following the service. It was amazing how many people came. Family from out of town. Pierce’s high school friends, childhood friends, teachers, coworkers, friend’s parents, teammates, our coworkers, our friends, our classmates from high school, Avery and Connor’s friends, Pierces grandparent’s friends and their high school classmates. Many of Pierce’s aunts and uncles friends. Acquaintances and strangers. Many dear friends who also knew our pain and the journey of great grief we were beginning. Pierce would have been in awe of the love shown to our family. The following day we laid Pierce to rest beside his grandparents and great grandparents at Greenwood Cemetery. A procession from the funeral home led by a firetruck and a police motorcade. Bagpipes played in the background as we approached his gravesite. His friends carried him to his final resting place. All of us understanding this was only an earthly goodbye but still a painful separation and emptiness lie ahead without him in our world. None of us prepared for the depth of grief yet to come.

22 Forever

A few months ago I was going through Pierce’s school materials we’ve saved over the yearsI admit I saved just about every art project or paper each of our children ever wrote or made. I came across a folder of papers written during Pierce’s middle school years. He really didn’t enjoy English, writing or journaling. Many times his rebellious nature would show by him making up funny, nonsense stories. Much of his writing would be completely centered around sports or athletes. If he chose a library book it was always sports related. I started to read through the pile of assignments. Many made me smile just reading and enjoying his sense of humor and funny stories. I came across one though and it completely brought me to my knees. He would have been 11 or 12 years old when it was written. Apparently the assignment was to choose an age you would want to be forever. I’m sure we read it at the time he wrote it but it completely knocked the wind out of me reading it now. So many questions. I’m afraid I will never really understand 😔. These are Pierce’s words written at about 12 yrs old.


If I could be any age that I wanted to be forever I would have to choose 22. I choose 22 because I would be old enough to smoke, drink, drive, vote and go to college. But I would not smoke and drink.

If I was 22 forever I would vote every 2, 4 and 6 years for representatives, senators and President. I would also go to college at UT, University of Texas and graduate. Then I would move from city to city so people wouldn’t recognize me.

If I was 22 forever I would drive places around the continental US, Canada, Central America and South America that I had never been before. After that I would get certified to fly a plane.


After weeping I smiled thinking about what he had written. “But I won’t smoke and drink”. Pierce knew I would be reading this so that sentence was meant for me! He knew there would be a lecture about how bad those things are for you and he wanted to spare himself that lecture! LoL! Also, going place to place so no one would recognize him. I realized he was saying because he wasn’t aging he would have to move or people would wonder. I still cannot understand where 22 came from. You drive at 16, vote at 18 and drink at 21? It just doesn’t make sense. I began to think of it as a gift he left. It was his wish to be 22 forever. I thought about him going into detail about voting and how very significant that is. Especially with the upcoming election and especially with the issues revolving around illegal immigration and the man who caused his death. I’ve always known Pierce would want us to tell his story and what our family has experienced and learned. I’ve always known Pierce would expect us to fight for not only him but others who are being affected by illegal immigrant crimes. I know he’s continuing to guide us and clearly he realized the importance of voting. We love you Pierce and we will never allow anyone to dismiss or excuse the behavior of those entering our country illegally and taking the lives of innocent American citizens. 😔🙏🏼💜✝️😇🇺🇸

Easter Memories in Pictures

I’ve always heard it said that “laughter is the best medicine”. I think that that is very true.

It is approaching 4 months of my family living without Pierce. Easter will be the first (major) holiday we have spent without him…and yet, I still sense him everywhere. I think of things he would say about things going on in our lives. I see him in pictures on my phone or at our parents’ house.

Some days are still very hard. The other day, I cried. I think it was partially from exhaustion, partially from watching the detached way news anchors talk about what’s going on with illegal immigration or our family’s situation, just missing Pierce…a combination of things. It’s hard for me, as a sister, to realize in different ways every day that my youngest brother is not here right now.

Tonight though, writing this, the night before Easter, something has tickled my funny bone. Maybe it’s because it’s late, maybe it’s because I know I need to smile and take it easy sometimes, or maybe, just because these old Easter pictures of my family are cracking me up.

Laughter is good. It’s healthy.

I think, when we are grieving, we can feel guilty for doing the most normal of things, like laughing. We don’t want to allow ourselves to be happy..because we think that that brief happiness reflects on the loss of the people we love. How can we possibly be happy and laugh when someone we love is gone from us?

I’m here to tell you, though–that laughter can be good. It’s nice to laugh at ourselves from time to time.

So, without further ado, we will delve into pictures of the Corcorans from Easters past!

Disclaimer: I am not at all responsible or liable for what you are about to see. The majority of these pictures are from the 1990’s. Yea, it was a different time back then. Many questionable fashion choices and hairstyles were made. Then again, the 90’s are making a come back, so they say. But I digress!

Going To Church In Style: I’ve started with one of the more tame photos first. Here, the three Corcoran siblings can be seen disembarking from the blue, shell of a van that we no doubt crumbled Cheeze Its in and otherwise destroyed, through no real fault of our own, on our journeys around town. We were kids, after all. You have Pierce in the middle, rocking the knee socks and floral tie that looks like it was a pillowcase in a former life. Honestly, he looks the best here. He has a hint of a smile, which you will see as we go through more pictures, was sometimes rare when he was a kid. Not because he was unhappy, per se, but more because he HATED taking pictures. Really hated it.😂 This started when he was around–probably 4 to 5. I am wearing a dress that my mom picked out for me. Connor didn’t get the memo that we were having our picture taken, so…he’s staring somewhere else.

Pierce With His Easter Basket: To be fair, Pierce probably just woke up here. He is probably still waking up and/or deciding which piece of Easter candy to eat for breakfast. In this writer’s humble opinion, that’s a serious decision to be making before noon. Also, Easter Candy > Halloween Candy.

Pierce and Bunny: Pierce always loved his stuffed animals and toys when he was this age. I think we all got bunnies in different colors that year and his was blue. He looks like he might have been teething a little bit when this was taken.

Easter Pictures At Mimi and Poppy’s: So, there’s a lot going on in this picture. We all look pretty happy though, so this must have been on an occasion where we got the pictures done and out of the way pretty easily. We probably had enjoyed some Easter candy too, so that could also explain our good moods. Pierce looks like he was in the middle of saying something, I’m wearing a long scarf around my neck in April like it’s a thing and Connor..well, Connor looks fairly normal. Also, Chi Chi, my grandparents’ old chihuahua is behind us.😂 Just casually photobombing.

The Whole Family: This is about when we probably started getting tired of taking pictures.😂 Pierce looks like he’s about to throw something at the cameraman, most likely our grandfather, Poppy. I’m in the middle, being dramatic. I was about 8 here, the age when I started going around and telling everyone I was going to be an actress. Connor is holding a purple egg and–showing how he feels about family pictures.😂 Our parents are probably thinking, “Well, at least we’re all in the picture!”

Mimi and Poppy: We were on our best behavior in this one.😂Probably because Mimi and Poppy gave us all kinds of snacks we liked whenever we came over.(Still do!) Pierce looks so much like Poppy in this one. I apparently wanted Alexander Hamilton to be in our picture? Or most likely, it’s a not so humble brag that I found some cash in an egg at the egg hunt.😂 Connor looks like, “I’m smiling, but can we be done now?”

Another Easter Morning: Pierce and all of us had just woken up when this was taken. This was taken at the then “new” house. Pierce always liked the Tennessee Vols.🧡 It looks like he got some fun stuff in his basket that year–some games, a Fantastic 4 toy and of course, candy! He looks 9 or 10 here.

Easter Baskets: This was taken at our old house. Connor is wearing two things I’ve never seen him in since: yellow and a suit jacket. I’m wearing a matching jacket and dress combo, which only seems to work for people under 10 and over 40, or perhaps politicians. Pierce looks like a little old man–he looks grown up in his Easter clothes.

Side Hug: Pierce and I look happy. I was trying to think the other day why we sometimes didn’t look happy in pictures when we were kids, and I think it was because we hated taking them.😂 Pierce hated it the most. Connor and I got to a certain age where we realized that, the sooner we smiled, the sooner it would all be over with, but Pierce never got to the point where he really liked taking them. Thus, sometimes, in certain progressions of pictures, we look as if we’re mad at each other.😂

And now, last, but certainly not least…

Easter Bunny?: My mom told me to preface this picture with an explanation.😂 She apparently was dressing up for an Easter thing at school for Connor’s class, but thought she would take pictures with Pierce too. After all, it’s not every day that you are dressed up like a rabbit. Pierce looks a little stunned. Probably thinking, “Where is my mom? What is this thing?!”

Well, I hope you all had a laugh at some of these like we have!😂 I may have to do a Christmas edition because there are even more pictures of us from Christmas.

I hope everyone has a Happy Easter! Spend it with your family and don’t forget what the season is really about!

We love and miss you, Pierce.❤️