Hank VanWitzenburg

Forever 20

4 years ago we saw him for the last time in person. Last time we heard his oh so funny laugh, saw his gregarious smile, held his big strong hands and touched his sweet face. I’ll NEVER get used to him being gone from our lives, nor will I ever think he was meant to go to heaven anywhere near his very young age of 20, or in this horrific and sudden way.  And certainly not of your his choice, (WHO would choose to die at such a young age?) The dealer, who died 2 years ago this November; will never be brought to Justice. The wheels of justice are known to turn painfully  slow, but in our case they never were even put into motion. No police personnel, no police detectives and no more DEA . Hank’s phone was a bread crumb trail of evidence, a treasure trove of words the dealer used to put himself as the guilty party who distributed poison to our son. It was never used to help build his case. It was the dealer’s ’s choice for him to live no longer. The dealer’s poison that ended my sons beautiful life. And the dealer’s sheer gumption and “throw caution to the wind” attitude that not only permanently altered and abruptly stopped our son’s life in its tracks, but ours as well. It effected his 4 siblings, his many cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents.
Can you imagine waking up on a Sunday morning,
making breakfast rest for your children and then going
to wake up your son no longer alive in his own bed?
To be forced to carry on a relationship with your
beautiful son in a spiritual way instead of physically having him here? Let me tell you, not only does that
never change, but it never gets any easier to deal with.
It is because of how much I love him that I will never
stop in my mission to change the way things are so
carelessly done with regard to gaining justice for those
who choose to dispense poison to our children, poison
 that the dealer’s know very well will kill them in seconds,
yet are allowed to roam the streets without
consequences for there deadly actions.My Hank made a
choice, but so did the dealer. My Hank paid the ultimate
price. What price did the dealer pay at the time?
Nothing. And now we are left with pages and pages of family pictures, not one of which are of him on his 21st birthday, which  would have celebrated only a couple weeks from the day he died. The family pictures are proof to anyone who fools themselves into believing that substance abuse is anything but the users fault. It is a FAMILY disease like  ANY OTHER, one for which we
 continue to suffer from.Our family is like your family, like anyone else, we wanted the best for our children and we provided a warm and safe place for them to grow and flourish. It CAN happen to because it happened to us. I never thought in a million years we would be a family to lose a child to this epidemic. But here we are. Looking at  memories that grow into older memories each year, never to include you in them. Not
 with a wife, now with your own children, not another
family picture will ever include your sweet face. I love my
dear sweet Hank, ,love  you so much. I’ve said it many
times to you before, too many times to count; that I wasn’t done with you yet. I’d give anything to have you back in my arms. But now I must be  very patient  to wait
until  that time. But oh once that day comes, I will feel
 your  great big hug like it was just yesterday. Until then, I will see you in my dreams sweet Hank, my second
oldest of our 5. How different our lives are since you’ve
gone to heaven . I will miss you until that day comes., Hank