Diary of a Mother's Mission

My son, Kevin Martin, disappered under mysterious circumstances in the wee hours of July 18, 2004. His partial remains were found on February 1, 2005 in the river. The Des Moines Police have not been helpful and this is my blog to tell what I have done as it's done.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Just Below The Surface

Christmas is almost here. Another Christmas. Another Holiday. I'm one of many trying to celebrate the special day under the shadow of pain and loss. No, I'm not alone. There was a special gathering in California, and at Disneyland, for the families that had lost loved ones in Iraq. This was all paid for by a charitable organization, I can't remember the name of the person or the organization off-hand. It was a wonderful like three day weekend for the familles and especially the children, to enjoy, have fun and momentarily forget the reality and loss in their life. The reporter talked to the mostly women, although a couple of children had lost their mother, and the children, who had lost a parent. They were all so happy to be there, excited to receive gifts, and go to Disneyland but their pain and sorrow and sadness was just below the surface.

Previously I had mentioned that Kevin, and now Terry, dominate my thoughts. Nothing new to that. I didn't even want to go to the Christmas get-together at work but I did end up going. The way the reporter said what she said put just the right words to what I feel all of the time. All of the things that I feel, the sorrow, the loss, the despair, disbelief, anger, everything... it's all right below the surface. Each day I go about my routine wearing my social mask, I guess you could say. I didn't want to wear that social mask at the Christmas gathering but I did. I sat and smiled and made small talk. In the end I was happy that I did go, even though the real me, my real world was right below the surface, and stayed there for that evening. The only time we're ever unhappy is when we think about ourselves, and so yes, it's good to be busy, be around others, and forget about our own problems, or what we see as our problems.

The other day one of the other drivers approached me in the morning as we were on our way into the building. He said that he had seen the sticker on the back of my car, Kevin's website, and so checked it out. He asked me about it and didn't realize that I was Kevin's mother. I explained to him that I was and we exchanged a few words. So, for another brief moment or two, my real world came to the surface. He said that you never know about people, what they're really going though, which is true, the social mask, and so for a brief time I felt acknowledged as a person. It felt wonderful! Others know, time goes on, they don't know what to say, but the result is that a person then feels left alone with their thoughts and pain and sorrow. At least I do anyway. So at least when the reporter put it in those terms, it acknowledged that these people who had lost a loved one, were having a brief respite from their pain and loss. All of their real feelings, their real lives, were just below the surface.

So another Christmas but I should be lucky because I am here to celebrate it. I have life as we know it here and so I should be thankful for that. I will think about Kevin and Terry but won't make the mistake of staying home this time. They will be with me, just below the surface, but I guess I'll put on my social mask and go out on the town, be with others and celebrate hope and everything else Christmas stands for...

Friday, December 08, 2006

Diary of a Mother's Mission

I didn't make that title up but I liked it. Every once in awhile I've said it to myself, read it on Kevin's website, and wondered what it meant, what I was doing, what I hoped to do. I guess this, my blogs, were suppose to be about the "investigation", progress, updates, etc. Well, there isn't any investigation and there never was one. The police scurried around and interviewed a handfull of people when I complained and told them I was coming out here to have a search. They knew there would be media attention and so were covering themselves. When I arrived out here in August I was told Kevin wasn't a priority and they insinuated, really like very subtle inuendo, although they couldn't really come out and say it because they have no proof, that he commited suicide. March 27th I saw Lt. Tunks and he told me he would get back to me regarding going over Kevin's file. He never did. About a month and a half ago I spoke to Lt. Jorgenson, a Polk Co. sherriff, someone I had spoken to before. He felt that I should go back to the police dept. and talk to Chief McCarthy first. I think he's right but this is not something I'm looking forward to doing. In my opinion McCarthy was very nasty to a woman who was seeking answers about her missing child. I was there alone. Actually I think it was done to intimidate me and it certainly did.

I'm having a hard enough time trying to do my job plus I took on the committment to refurbish a little house. Fortunately it is almost complete, at least the basics anyway, and my involvement with N.F.C.(they hold the escrow money to fix up the house and tell you what needs to be done) It's a wonderful program but it will be a tremendous relief when my involvement with them is done. Kevin is on my mind all the time. (as is Terry) As soon as the Holiday's are over I plan to try a few things. I haven't given up on the possibility of a new investigation. I've been told many things, though, including just backing off and doing nothing. My involvement with the house has kind of forced that issue but no one has come forward, nothing has changed. Things happen as there suppose to happen, or so I've been told.

Yesterday I received a notice that I was in violation of city codes. There was a very neat little pile of rubble in the back, way away from the road. I had begun to check on a few possibilities to get it removed when I got, what I considered to be a harrassing correspondence from the city. Anyway, that very afternoon someone came to remove the garbage. I wish the "City of Des Moines" was as diligent in other matters like investigating the disappearance and death of one of its citizens. They don't have enough money for the police but they seem to have enough money to pay the house police and the weed inspectors. Yes, I got a notice about that, too. Two notices of violation and I've only lived there for four and a half months, owned it for not even six and a half months. The city just built a new skating rink which is now open, they're putting in a new terrace garden in front of the Capitol; amazing. But the police have no resources. I met Mayor Frank Cownie at the 100th anniversary of our union - the A.T.U. I'm not a member but did go at the request of my girlfriend. I didn't say anything to him about Kevin although I felt like it. After the Holidays I will go to city hall. Perhaps he will remember me, especially if I wear my D.A.R.T. uniform. I'd like to tell him my concerns, my opinion, about his city.

So what is my mission? I might not ever be able to accomplish anything regarding a new investigation, what really happened to Kevin, but I can work towards that end. The Truth. If that never happens, but really more important than that, is that his memory is kept alive. Kevin isn't defined by how he died, although the truth should always be known, and so I hope as many people as possible will know about him, his uniqeness, as is every other individual life. No one wants their loved one, their child to die in vane and I don't either. Kevin had a life and a story to tell, too, so perhaps that's my bigger and most important mission...