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suburban dad death


Explaining suburban dad death to suburban kids

Get married, have kids, and if they’re athletes you’ll see every town within thirty miles.

The Canby Cougar will bite you.

Get ready to be mauled by a Tualatin Timberwolf.

Run from the Newberg Tiger.

Every town’s mascot sounds fierce until suburban dad death shows up.

Then you need to ask, “is one town that much different than the rest?”

Suburban dad death 1

A woman’s body was found on a trail beside the river, a park trail used by visitors walking and riding bikes.

Her husband was a suspect, but not their daughters.

Everything pointed to him, except the evidence.

He was a skilled suburban murderer who knew how to cover his tracks, or he got lucky.

Either way, he skipped out of the case and continued living at home and raising his kids.

On the street he was a killer, but still a good dad.

Marital problems make people do things like separate, divorce, or go to counseling.

This dad skipped all the drama for a restart without the baggage.


Suburban dad death 2

In the mix of suburban dads, professional men stand out.

They live in bigger, nicer houses, but counter that by driving a beater car like a normal dad.

If you met them in a parking lot you might think they work on a landscaping crew instead of hiring a landscaping crew.

Like everyone, sometimes things go wrong.

When professional man makes a mistake, a big mistake, they face bigger losses.

At least if feels like a bigger loss to them, so they take an extreme measure.

Instead of facing their accusers in court, instead of winning or losing, they see their good name fouled and see no redemption.

When they disappear, search parties search.

There’s the beater rig a few miles away. Soon after the searchers find a life ended.

It might be a professional man’s way out, but that ignores the rest of us.

Did he, didn’t he, and is his act contagious?


Suburban dad death 3

A man’s wife finds a new life with a new guru.

She leaves her family for a spiritual journey of selfishness, leaving kids who depended on her.

Her desertion affects one kid more than the other.

They break with the reality they once knew and slip into a mental state so down they grow into a non-functioning person living in a group home.

The dad keeps his head down and works through his problems, quietly blaming himself for his wife and kids’ outcomes.

The ward of the state kid gets into online dating, finds trouble, and checks further out.

One day they walk the MAX track plugged into music when a train bears down.

Friends and family attend a service for one taken too soon.

Not so long after the suburban dad disappears.

Another search party heads out.

They find his car, then him.

At his service someone confides that they’d kill themselves too if it weren’t for their kids.

They’re talking about millennial kids, life saving kids.


It’s a bleak picture of suburban dad death, but one worth looking at when things don’t work out.

Before deciding a course of action, or reaction, ask yourself:

1. Who’s life do I affect most?

2. What will they do without me?

3. Do I have other choices?

If you build a home with love in your community, you’ll leave a hole that never quite gets filled back up if you leave the wrong way.

Stand up guys stand up. That’s what they do.

If you call yourself a stand up guy, you can’t just sit down.

Like a center pole in a tent, life collapses on the rest of us and we remember how it felt.

That’s not a gift to give anyone.

About David Gillaspie
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