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The  murder of Ricky Byrdsong and Won-Joon Yoon, and the attempted
murder of several others, has really hit home around here. But we find
ourselves asking why? Why this? Why Littleton? Why any one vicious
American crime over another? As soon as we heard this, though, we felt a
pain in our gut.

We didn't know much about Byrdsong, other than his resume and the weird
incident at Minnesota where he left the bench and was soon thereafter put
on leave by Northwestern.  But after reading the various comments by
people, it's obvious to us that this is not a man who can be simply
defined by basketball.  He's loved by a lot of people and they all
say very similar things about him: Gentle. Loving. A teacher. 
Utterly lacking in prejudice, a wonderful man.  It underscored
to  us the importance of not judging someone by a limited amount of
information.  Ricky Byrdsong, who had left coaching, had rebuilt his
life and it sounds like a wonderful life, too.  That it was ripped
away from him by some punk, that he was ripped away from his family this
way - like every time this happens, it just doesn't make sense.  It's
beyond reason or understanding, and while we hope against hope that it
never happens to anyone else, we also hope that it stays beyond reason or
understanding, because we don't want to understand this.

We have made a lot of great friends here, and many of you have extended
yourselves to people who you don't know, whose losses stagger them
greatly.  We looked up some addresses and phone numbers - no one's
home, and we would never recommend that anyone else do so - but churches,
synagogues, and businesses.  We'll pass those on to you guys
now  in case anyone would like to send condolences, flowers, or just
to offer some support.  We have empathy for everyone concerned, but
particularly for Ricky Byrdsong's children, who have a double trauma to
deal with: their father's death and being witnesses to it as well. We have
no doubt that the Korean and Orthodox Congregations would also appreciate
hearing from decent, caring Americans after what they've been put through.

First Presbyterian Church for  (Ricky Byrdsong's service)

1427 Chicago Ave
Evanston, IL 60201
(847) 864-1472

Korean United Methodist Church   (Won-Joon Yoon's Church)

1924 E 3rd St
Bloomington, IN 47401
(812) 331-2080

Anshe Motele Congregation (for wounded Orthodox)

6520 N. California
Chicago, IL 60645
(773) 743-2420     


Aon Corporation   
(Byrdsong's employers)