Friday, October 05, 2018


I often walked under the Vincent Royal railroad bridge and was touched by the photo of the young man who died at 16 years and 23 days. "Pourquoi?" Why. it asked.

Admittedly, I didn't think much about it until walked into a memorial garden when out on a walk with Sherlock. On a bench was a sign dedicated to Vinc, and "we will never forget all the moments lived here."

I wondered if it were the same Vinc.

As we walked down a street, I noticed for the first time that there were faded newspaper articles, protected by plastic covers. They were dated August 2011 and told of the death of Vincent Royall by a train.

The father met with train officials trying to get crossings made safer.

Although suicide was mentioned, it wasn't an official ruling.

Someone lived in the house. I could hear voices and even if Vincent died seven years ago, it would have been improper to knock and ask even one of the many questions. That there were two memorials and seven-year-old news clippings were still posted, told me that time had not washed away the grief of losing a child.

Two days before, I'd been on a historic tour of the village. That type of tour told of battles and buildings. The story of Vincent had become a mini-tour, more personal. Although there have been thousands of personal losses in the village from the 10th century, they have been washed away by time.

This one is still present in the bridge, the park and old newspaper articles.

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