By Paul Beattie
In 5 days we lost two beautiful souls, two young men taken from their families and our society. 17-year-old Tyrenn Smith died as a passenger in a tragic car accident the night before he was to fly to re-join his Mom in a move from Kent to Phoenix on June 2nd. It was a job opportunity she could not turn down and Tyrenn had a choice of staying and finishing his Senior year at Kentwood where he was excelling in football and his studies and where all his friends were but he could not leave his Mom. He decided it was about family and being there for his Mom.
Then on Sunday June 7th, 18-year-old Dillon Garnes, a senior at Mt Si High school who was preparing for the Wildcats Graduation event went to bed. Dillon never woke up. He died in his sleep due to an undiagnosed heart condition. Dillon was captain of his track team and a running start student ready to attend Western Washington University with his AA degree already in his back pocket.
Both had remembrances written about them. We wrote about Tyrenn on ESN and Danna McCall in the Living Snoqualmie wrote about Dillon. I had a chance to talk with Tyrenn’s family, friends and coach and got to meet this incredible kid through their remembrances and felt humbled to have gotten to know him at all through his loved ones. My friend at Snoqualmie Valley Sports Rhett Workman passed on the story of Dillon by Danna. Her story is beautiful and gives you a real sense of this young man what he stands for and I am forever touched to simply have gotten to know him this tiny bit through her words. I encourage you to read both if you have not already and feel free to share. Their stories need to be shared.
So why do I say these stories “need” to be shared. I am not going to turn this into a political diatribe or view. I am not going to turn this into an argument over where our society is right now or a religious discussion. There is a lot of discussion, outrage and anger in our society those are facts. Those who read my piece on Tyrenn may remember a part that I took some editorial privilege in trying to understand why such a person as Tyrenn was taken from this earth when we seemingly need him and many more like now more than ever. Now Dillon.
Let me back up here a little bit for those who did not read our piece on Tyrenn, he was described as one of the most loving, loyal, positive person you could know. Loved ones said he would do anything for anyone who needed help, everyone was a friend and he loved his family and friends more than anything. He watched over his Mom, sister and niece Zay Zay. This little girl was the center of his world. Then there was the Deleone family who took Tyrenn under their wing and became close to not only Tyrenn but his whole family and he would do anything for his adopted second family. That is how Tyrenn was described to me.
Then I am reading about Dillon in Danna’s story in Living Snoqualmie and I come to the this part, the quotes are from his Mom Karen;
“He didn’t want to be part of negativity. He put his energy and focus into the people he was with at the time, whether it was family or friends. He was always present.”
Dillon was the same genuine person to all. Everyone we spoke to described him similarly. Whether it was a friend, coach, or family member, they all shared the same core message of who he truly was: kind, loving, genuine.
Dillon Alexander Garnes was the definition of true friend. The kind – if you’re lucky – you have in your life. He was mature beyond his years.
Two young men who lived and impacted hundreds of people that their families had not even realized. This brought me back to my question why now? Again, please take these words as you believe because in our world now of trying to put everything in a specific category or put people into this box of this is your religion which means you must be this politically and you must believe these things. Words are important but context gives them meaning so take these words in the spirit that Tyrenn and Dillon lived.
So I ask, is the timing of these two simply coincidence or is there a message that is trying to be shown. Did these two souls come to this world to simply remind us of the goodness we all have and the greatness we aspire to? These two young men are leaders and they should be the ones that garner at least as much attention now as do those that are being held up for all these different causes. I am not saying or judging any of the current issues as not important or not valid what I am saying is how these two young men lived their short lives should be the example.
What if we all lived like Tyrenn and Dillon? I am fairly certain these two never knew each other but if they did I believe they would have been good friends. I believe they would have been a force of positivity, acceptance and love. Maybe this was the only way to get these two together and to show the rest of us of how to live and to again start caring about each other unconditionally.
If you believe every person comes into this world has a purpose then it is clear what the purpose of Dillon and Tyrenn is. We should all be sad that these two young men are not here with us right now but it will be sadder if we do not learn the exceptionally valuable lesson these two are teaching all of humankind. It is being said that the times we are living right now are a watershed moment because of the current state of our society. I say it is a watershed moment because humans were taught a very basic lesson that we all should know by now by these two amazing spirits.
I maintain that if we all lived as Tyrenn and Dillon that all these problems we have would disappear. It is time to ask how could we have this many problems and differences if we all lived every single day with the values of love, loyalty, friendship, dignity and empathy?
Two Beautiful Souls, Dillon Garnes and Tyrenn Smith please don’t waste this opportunity to grow, learn and most of all love. I’d say rest in peace young men but there is just no way they will rest in peace they are still working and I bet they have met and I bet they are friends and my final bet is they refuse to give up and that is the lesson we all need to follow.