Our Hearts Are Aching: Dax Brown 1997-2015
This section includes both obituaries and memories. Honoring our loved ones who have died does not end immediately after their passing. We recognize that… so we’re extending our obituary section to include individuals who may have left a long time ago. If you want to remember someone who is gone, either recently or longer ago, please send a photo and a few sentences to email@example.com. Tell us why you would like to honor the person–is it their birthday, the date of their passing or someother date of significance to you.
Jan Carr, a North Coast resident, remembers Dax Brown, the recent victim of a shooting in Eureka.
Although, I didn’t know Dax very well, I remember the first time I saw him, he must have been about twelve or thirteen. He came to a McKinleyville Youth Football practice, and if I remember correctly, he played on the team that year. His mother had just passed away, she was a homeless addict, and Dax had been living on the streets with her. We heard rumors his father was also an addict on the streets of Eureka, and had no interest in raising Dax. At the time, Dax was staying with a young woman and her husband. They weren’t related by blood, but they stepped up and offered to parent Dax. I remember my own sons and I went shopping the very next day after meeting Dax, and bought him his school clothes for that year. It seemed Dax’s story touched all of us in youth football, very deeply.
During that football season, the young woman and her husband began having some trouble with Dax. At least three other families also stepped up, and volunteered to give Dax a safe place to live. He went home with a few of those families, but one by one, the pattern seemed to repeat itself, and things never worked out for Dax. Don’t get me wrong, these families tried, and I believe Dax tried, but difficulties plagued this child.
I mostly lost track of Dax in the following years, but had brief glimpses of him from time to time, as he moved from family to family, school to school. Having sons his age, it became common knowledge Dax was enamored by the gangster life, and whether it true or not, he claimed to be the founding member of the “Mack Town Gang.” This didn’t surprise any of us, but saddened all of us. I remember about two years ago, when Dax was stabbed by another teen at the 76 station in McKinleyville. Again no surprise, just a deepened sadness.
This mornings news of Dax’s violent death brought me many messages from old football moms from youth league. None of us surprised, but all of us sharing grief. On some level we all failed Dax. On some level he failed himself. He’s with his mother now, in peace. Our hearts are aching.