Apparently kids used the internet to lure this my friends friend Michael out. They pretended to be gay and than beat him, scared him into oncoming traffic, beat him some more and stole his money.
This comes from my friends blog it was written in honor of their friend who I don't know. I want to post this as I am and always will be appalled by senseless violence. I can't post the link anymore, as it is myspace and it doesn't work any more. Above however is the NYT link to this story.
I thought it was important for me to share my blog with you all today. Please say a prayer or think good thoughts for Michael Sandy today.
Monday, October 09, 2006, 11pm
thought it was important for me to share my blog with you all today. Please say a prayer or think good thoughts for Michael Sandy today.
I told a friend, earlier today, that the word is hope. Today's word is, hope.
Monday, October 09, 2006, 11pm
I can't quite describe with any dictionary what today's news makes me feel. This morning when I woke up there was news on the television that North Korea was test-firing nuclear weapons. International Security is, once again, in jeopardy. Funny, that didn't seem so real, a real threat that is. I thought, eh, it will all work out. That's how these go.
I looked at my phone, it was beeping at me. The message from Nick said, "call me." He answered his phone on the first ring and told me that Mike Sandy, [his former roommate, and our friend] was in the hospital. Mike was beaten up by two "white guys" and then hit by a car on the Belt Parkway. I must admit, the tone in his voice reminded of me of a similar phone call I got four years earlier. The good news this time was that nobody was dead. Mike was hurt very badly, but alive! Mike's story is not easy to tell. I am not even sure it's my place to tell it. So I will rely on my perception of today's news, but I must warn you, it's not a happy ending. Well, at least for today.
I left my house around noon and drove down to Brooklyn. I fully expected to be in traffic since that would make everything just perfect, you know what I mean? Surprisingly it was easy driving. I made it to Williamsburg in one hour and three phone calls. It's a good thing I charged the phone in the car – I would be on it most of the day.
I was prepared, I thought. I had my large iced coffee, a bacon egg and cheese, clothes for tomorrow, the laptop and my school work. My function, as I saw it, was to walk the dog [that was something Mike would have been doing had this not happened] and take care of the food factor for the guys when they returned home from the hospital. After all it was a long night for them. They had gotten the news the night before, late, around 1 am. There was a knock at the door, detectives. They got the address by running Mike's license plate. They couldn't use his ID because it was stolen. The police shared the news. Needless to say, the two of them were devastated. They spent the evening gathering information for the police. Mike's parents' number had to be tracked down, which took Nick a bit of time and ingenuity to make tangible. Nick and Jason went to the hospital with two of the upstairs neighbors and waited with Mike's parents.
They waited all morning and were given no news. Mike was on a respirator after being revived by Emergency Workers at the scene. There was a witness, she called for help. Someone at the hospital told Jason if there was anyone to be thanked after all this, it was those Emergency Workers. I told Nick I would be at the apartment taking care of things for the dog and whatnot. He told me about the Press sniffing around at the hospital, but I wasn't prepared for what I experienced when I arrived at the door to the apartment. As I rounded the corner off Manhattan Ave onto Meserole, I noticed the press. Like vultures they were lurking outside armed with microphones, telephoto lenses and - a mildly concerned but mostly nosey kind of look on their faces. The first one to approach me as I walked up to the door was from ABC News, Kemberly something was her name. She asked if I had heard the news and who I was. I admit, I was taken completely by surprise and felt very much 'put on the spot' by this. That's what they do, I guess.
I politely answered, trying to say as little as possible. I said what came naturally to me. I told her that I was here to support the friends and that I know him as well. I replied that he is a sweet, sweet guy. I believe the exact words I used were "a guy with a big smile and an even bigger heart," adding as I walked through the doorway, "hopefully someone saw what happened and will report it to the police to help us find who did this." I walked into the apartment sort of shaken and feeling even more uncomfortable. Tony was home and he too was wary of what kind of spin the reporters were looking for. They were sniffing away at the possible "gay-bashing" angle of this story.
The reality is that nobody really knows what happened except for those involved and most importantly, Mike himself. Throughout the afternoon, bits and pieces of a story were coming to light. Jason said that he had spoken to Mike earlier, around 6, and told him he would call him later to hang out. Apparently Mike was parked in an area known to be a spot where gays go to cruise other gays. At about nine thirty there was an altercation between Mike and the "white guys." It is still anybody's guess how it began but that led to a physical fight in which, it is said, Mike was beaten up. Fleeing for his life, Mike ran. Likely dazed and confused, he wound up on the parkway it self, in traffic. A car struck him and he lay there in the road bleeding and badly beaten as the car drove off. That in itself is something I don't think anyone can imagine experiencing, I know I can't. But – there's more. One of the "white guys" ran out onto the roadway. He grabbed Mike and dragged his lifeless body to the median where he rummaged through his pockets - robbed him and left him there - to die. When I heard this, I thought – animals. People who could do this are animals. Thank God for the woman who called for help. Mike was revived, but not conscious. He was transferred to a nearby hospital and remains there on a respirator with no apparent brain function.
As I walked the dog with Nick tonight, before he left to go back to the hospital, I asked him if he realized the depth of Mike's situation. He did. I try not to think negatively, I try to keep hope. I am hopeful that Mike will recover and the animals that did this to him will be caught and punished. As I look through the messages that his friends have left him on his MySpace, I can't help but picture him sitting at the table eating Thai food, rubbing his scratch off ticket while watching Paula Abdul on the DV-R and laughing. I picture Mike skating - like a champion - on the ice in Central Park. As I recall the photographs I took of him on that day, I hope. I hope that all the pain and the anguish that today's news brings with it is soon replaced with another day and another chance to see Michael Sandy smile.