Friday, March 11, 2016

Rashad Shakir

Because I had been having trouble with finding the whereabouts of my first love for several years, I suspected that he was dead. Today, I got confirmation of my suspicion. He died in 1989, not long after his 29th birthday.

I have never liked stupid men and Rashad was brilliant. Yet I suspect that he died of stupidity—either his own or that of another. I can't find his cause of death without paying to find it, but I know, in my older age, that stupidity is never far from any of us.

Los Angeles was a Hell of drugs and violence in the 1980s, I’m told. I spent that decade far away from my hometown, courtesy of my parents’ decision to move from LA to Albuquerque in 1978--the year I graduated from high school--and my own decision to join the USAF in 1981. I wasn’t even in country during most of the second half of the 80s. Looking back, I returned to the USA almost exactly when Rashad died, but I didn’t return to LA until 1994.

When both were about 16, Rashad resembled a stronger-jawed, pre-surgery, and pre-bleached Michael Jackson—who, of course, is gone too. I can still hear Rashad’s confident tenor voice and see his bright smile. I wish...

His birthdate is 9/11/1960. At least he never got to see it tarnished.

Rest in Peace, my love.

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