They say the good die young, I’ve heard it a lot this week. And if that is true Alex Trussell lived an extraordinary long life. Because he was the best out of all of us. He had the spirit of a giant and it would be an honor to view life standing on his shoulders. No matter how I am feeling happy, loved, confused or hurting in an extreme way like I am right now. All I know how to do is write and for him that is what I will do. There’s about 10 people in this world that if I lost them I’d be absolutely destroyed. Lost in such a way that a life that is already a maze I’m trying to navigate through would become a labyrinth. Well as of November 15th that number is now down to about 9.
I’m hurting right now and I am usually the one people go to when they feel pain. The one who cares about everyone as if they are the only one. Because no one in this world should ever feel like they don’t have anyone. I lost someone who was an important piece of my existence and now I am feeling alone. The ones that care about me want to console me and I appreciate that. They have given me the only smiles or laughs I’ve had the past five days. Still they know there really aren’t any words to make this bearable for me right now. I wanted a miracle but instead got a harsh reality. We all did.
I want to be clear this isn’t an obituary. This isn’t a list of things I wished I had said or regrets I have when it came to friendship/brotherhood with Alex. We ended every conversation the exact same beautiful nostalgic way
He would say “I love you Grande”
And I would reply “I love you too Pequeno. Get home safe.”
It was predictable and amazing.
So in this I will not mourn. I will just do my best in writing to give one more “I love you” from me and all the people he touched. To say I am genuinely sorry to all the students who will never get to experience him in a classroom or be coached by him. I got my 7 years with him. And even though it’s not nearly enough I feel horrible for anyone who reads this and never got the chance to hear his laugh, to have a conversation with him, for him to have a random theory about life that he blurts out in the middle of a movie, to argue with him and he makes a joke that makes you realize midway through there is no way right or wrong you can stay upset with him.
He was the man who would give you an open invite to everything he did.
There is power in that…
He lived a romantic life filled with love from every aspect. He grew up with love, he did a job he loved, he lived with who he loved, he only hung out with those he loved and when he passed he was surrounded by love for days. He did not deserve for his life to end but every day he lived the life he deserved.
He was the type of human if something he did really hurt you he would cease doing that action immediately. Also if something he did made you smile he’d do it every time he saw you.
He was a better man than me. I say that with supreme confidence. There are people in this world that will tell you I am a good person but he was better. There are people in this world that will tell you I make them smile. He was one of the ones to make me happy. If I have ever been a light in your life. Please realize he was one of the people who fed a spark to my flame. I didn’t lose a little brother I gained an angel. I have to keep telling myself that. I thought knowing him was a gift. Someone that I was fortunate to cross paths with on this journey we call life. But I see clearly as if the eyes of heaven showed me. He wasn’t a gift he was a blessing he was someone I was meant to encounter. The only “little brother” I ever took during my days in Lambda Chi Alpha. We were different in every way. Height, size, we had different taste in music, we had different vices, we had a different upbringing on different sides of the country, but he has a permanent place in my heart. Truss built a house in my memories that a thousand hurricanes couldn’t tear down. He always told me how he looked up to me. And that’s beautiful because even though he was little in stature he was a mountain of inspiration. He lived the type of life his elders envied and his peers wanted to be a part of. Yet young or old if you ever encountered him you can testify this is a life gone too soon. A spirit that should’ve dwelled in the physical much longer. I have lost friends in the past to a litany of things from suicide to gang violence. But never someone as pure as him. It’s not supposed to be like this. Life is a lot of things, but it was not supposed to be this for someone like him.
As I looked on in this hospital room. Angry about things I couldn’t control. I noticed the constant was his parents. I met them a handful of times over the years and every time they treated me a boy from Ohio like I was a kid from Sacramento who they’ve known since diapers. You can see their influence in Trussell. They are going through a parent’s worse nightmare and yet they are the pillars to which everyone leaned on in one way or another these last few days in the hospital. His mother never leaving his bed side making sure everyone who came to say goodbye got the proper chance. Giving us hugs that give the energy of “it’s not okay by any means but it’ll be alright someday”. His father keeping us all informed like we are the closes of relatives. Making us laugh whenever the room got too heavy. And the room was always heavy. I had a lump in my throat constantly that if I swallowed I felt as if I’d digest part my soul. I think it helped Papa Trussell too knowing he made this easier on us. As easy as something like this could be.
They were losing a son. They were making decisions with doctors on what to do with the expiring life of their baby boy.
You know what kind of people you have to be watching your son die but treat everyone who walked into that ICU as if they were becoming part of your family? Phenomenal people that’s what. They may never see this, but I told them in person and I’ll say it again; Thank you. Thank you for bringing Alexander into this world and thank you for graciously and continuously allowing us to say proper farewells as he exited it. Them and the nurses really showed a compassion that is often lacking in humanity. There’s 10 of us sleeping in the hospital room in chairs and on the floor. There others in the waiting room and a countless number texting or messaging on social media Cruz-Lugo and I hoping for hope. That’s exactly what they are doing hoping for hope. We all know the outcome it’s just hurtful waiting game. Wanting him to smile say “Hey guys” and ask for hot cheetos. You feel helpless. A feeling I don’t often have. You started with hoping he’ll be alright. It’s Alex he must have just fell or cut himself trying to cook. Every update you wish the circumstances change. Once you realize the severity of his injury, you have to switch the direction of your hope. Then you hope justice is served. You hope whoever caused this. Whoever drove off without even knowing if the victim made it gets what they deserve. But again the hope must shift. This anger isn’t us. This anger isn’t the reason we loved Trussell and why Trussell loved us in return. You hope no one else ever has to go through this. That you wish you had come together under any other condition. 3 days in the hospital. Barely eating, not sleeping, sharing memories, experiencing every emotion possible, touching him and having to say my last goodbye every time I left the room. I had come to peace with the fact that he was leaving this world in the physical. I wasn’t alright with it. I’ll probably go through life everyday wishing I could change it. Thinking about him the same way I think about my Pop Pop who passed. But I found peace in how he got to leave this world. It was a farewell we all needed. I don’t know if I could’ve endured the pain had I simply heard in a phone call that never again would I be able to give him a phone call. So now my hope switched to everyone who will be hurt most by not being able to hear his voice again. I hoped that they get a chance to grieve properly. I hoped once the time comes for them to smile again on the regular basis that they live a full and beautiful life to honor Alex Trussell. I hoped for his parents, I hope for his sister Spencer, I hoped for his relatives, I hoped for Mims, I hoped for Angie, I hoped for Christian and Andrew, I hoped for Lambda Chi Alpha, I hoped for his students, I hoped for the Sacramento crew and everyone in Reno or wherever he touched. I hoped this isn’t just a passing day because he was the type of man that deserved a legacy. He should’ve been an old gray man still with no real facial hair, skinny with a potbelly in a room of his kids and grandchildren when he passed but he was a 24-year-old middle school teacher who just began to bloom. So with him in mind I hope we all mourn his death. But I also hope with all my hope we all grow from his memory, live for him, reach our potential and accomplish all the great things he surely would’ve done had he had adequate time. Show the world how this blessing of a human influenced you. He earned that. I will isolate myself, so I am going to have to take my own advice with this. Because he made my personal world and this world a better place. Once he sent me a text stating how he loved my writing because no matter the topic it made him feel like he was there. He said “I feel like I just needed to tell you that, so thank you”.
Well for now on I will scribe in the clouds because Alex Scott Trussell my pequeno will be with me in everything I write. You were in angel in life and now you’re a guardian angel to so many. Narrating from on high following us like a tiny shadow and laughing at our expense and telling us to never give up. Today when I walked outside coming out of the shadows of my mind it seemed like there was an extra ray of light in the gloomy sky. A little more inspiring optimism in the Fall air. I hope with all of my hope that was Pequeno letting me no not to worry too much he is not going anywhere.
Son, brother, grandson, nephew, friend, teacher, coach, always himself. Alexander Scott Trussell was a lot of things to a lot of people. That’s probably why he was always exactly what you needed, when you needed it in your life.