My Friend Reed: An Essay In Memoriam

For the UAS Whalesong

The moment I came around Douglas Island headed home from fishing September 14, 2016 my phone exploded. As I quickly checked it, I saw everyone’s posts about the bad news. I still can’t fully comprehend it. The posts were a group of shared messages from the Student Conservation Association, accompanied with the re-posters’ opinions. People I didn’t even know were sharing some of the most emotionally charged condolences. The original post was a photo of my good friend Reed, with his “traditionally Reed” long blond hair and large radiant smile. The accompanying note read:

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of SCA New Hampshire AmeriCorps member Reed McWilliams, 21, of Bethel, Alaska. On Tuesday, September 13th while off-duty, Reed drowned while swimming in the Connecticut River in Cornish, NH. Earlier in the day, he and his SCA corps mates had been working to restore a section of nearby Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site.

Reed’s deep love of the outdoors, his determination to give back, and his joyful spirit will be greatly missed.

Our thoughts and hearts are with Reed’s family, his loved ones and all those affected by this terrible loss.” Continue reading “My Friend Reed: An Essay In Memoriam”