I am Tom Freeland, a lawyer in Oxford, Mississippi. The picture in the header is my law office. I'm on Twitter as NMissC

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Reconciliation After Fort Hood

My sister, Lee Hancock, a writer in Texas, covered the Fort Hood shootings,  and has written a wonderful and moving story about the aftermath.  It begins:

Nader Hasan was wrapping up a rare afternoon on the golf course, his thoughts far from his suburban D.C. law office, when his cell phone buzzed and displayed his mother’s number. The sound of her voice told Nader she had bad news. She said she’d just gotten a call about a shooting at Fort Hood; the wounded included his first cousin Nidal, a U.S. Army major. Nidal had only been in Texas for four months, and he was a psychiatrist, for God’s sake, the last person anyone in the family would expect to end up in the crosshairs of some nut with a grudge and a gun.

Rushing into the clubhouse, Nader asked someone to turn a TV to cable news. Nidal? Nader’s thoughts looped. They’d grown up blocks apart in the D.C. suburbs. Their mothers were sisters. They were close as brothers until Nidal moved to Roanoke with his family in high school. Nidal was the passive and obedient one. He didn’t fight, never raised his voice, never broke a speed limit, wouldn’t even date in high school because his Palestinian-immigrant parents forbade it.Why the hell would someone shoot Nidal?


Kerry Cahill got the first call, at midafternoon, from her mother in Texas: There had been a shooting at the sprawling Army post where her father, Michael Cahill, worked as a civilian physician’s assistant. Her mother knew only what she’d gleaned from the TV news bulletins: The shooting had broken out at the Soldier Readiness Center, where Michael Cahill worked; there were multiple casualties; the entire post was locked down. So far, Cahill hadn’t called, and his cell phone rang to voice mail. Kerry suddenly wished she were closer, still living in New Orleans and not here, in Chicago, where she’d moved to pursue acting possibilities.

Very highly recommended.  Check it out.

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