Tuesday, May 29, 2007

C.W. Jefferys - Jordan Manners

As we begin to get older and older, so too do we begin to realize how our youth and its innocence have begun to evaporate.

Today, two young men have been charged in the shooting death of their 15 year old schoolmate Jordan Manners.

Why has this event prompted me to think about my youth and its lost innocence? As a kid, I lived in Downsview. 30 Tobermory Drive and 17 Cane Grassway are now "not so nice places" to be found in...nonetheless, I lived their once upon a time.

I attended a couple of Catholic schools, St. Wilfred's and then St. Francis De Sales. Had my First Communion at St. Wilf's Church. I lived there during the famous Canada-Russia series in 1972. I played minor hockey for the Young Canadians. I had my tonsils removed at North York General. Ms. Giovannilla banged her pointer on the desk for the entire grade two school year. The Hustle was the biggest tune on the radio in Grade 5. Sweet City Women by the Canadian band The Stampeders in '73.

For me, Downsview is full of childhood memories that are hard to shake. Why am I sharing this with all of you? Why?

Why? Because for the better part of 4 summers, I walked through a wooded area behind North York Public Library, across a tiny creek, up a hill and over 6 blocks to swim every single day at CW Jefferbys' pool. I obtained my swimming badges in that very pool. Life was good. Downsview was good.

Watching the news today, I couldn't help but recognize the townhomes on Driftwood that I used to play at as a boy as the police scoured the area for witnesses and suspects. All the while, shaking my head. 30 years later it has come to this. We've regressed.

Today a young man lies cold and still. Two of his friends lay in wait for trial.
Our innocence and that of my childhood village has faded.

Lie in peace young Jordan.

Mario Silva has begun a petition to present to Parliament. As soon as I figure out how to put it online I will. I suggest all of us sign it to help put an end to this senseless violence amongst our most vulnerable and underprivileged citizens.

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