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Rest in Peace dear brother Jeremy. I love you.

My brother Jeremy Davis Carter died last night. 2:00 AM. As I’m writing this, about 6 hours ago. He was only 28 years old. Dammit.

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I am so raw. I feel everything and nothing at once, at the same time. I wasn’t planning on blogging. I don’t know if I will hit “Publish”. I might. But right now my thoughts are disjointed, I am anxious to go out and do something, tackle something, but there is really nothing to do. At least not yet. There will be.

My dad called me sometime around 10:10 last night and told me that something was wrong, that they were at the hospital with Jeremy and it was not good. I got in the car and got there as quick as I could. I got a hold of Jamie at work and got him to come down. He made it there before me.

Jeremy was in Trauma 1 in the ER. He was not responsive. His temperature was low. His organs were not working. He was bleeding. He was yellow. I find out later that he had a heart attack at home while alone in the kitchen with our mom, my dear mother had to give him CPR until the paramedics came, and they took him to the ER.

Trauma 1 was a flurry of activity the entire night. Until it wasn’t. Jeremy had IV’s everywhere; leg, groin, arm, thumb. He had saline, epinephrine, blood, potassium, vial after vial after bag after bag after syringe. They did everything they could, they really did. They set us up in a family room. About 1:50, we hear Code Blue, Trauma 1. All personnel. Dammit.

Jeremy’s heart stopped a second time. They did CPR for 10 minutes. CPR in a real ER is no joke. It’s not slow, even compressions. It’s fast. It’s hard. It’s violent. It shakes the whole bed and takes an incredible amount of energy and doctors switch out every 30 seconds because it’s just so hard.

After 10 minutes of trying, they said they would continue, but he would likely be severely brain damaged. We told them to stop. They did. He died at 2:00 AM on December 20, 2015. He was only 28 years old. Dammit. I cried as hard as I ever had. I kept it together until the doctor said stop. Not afterwards. None of us did.

What happened after that. I don’t know. It’s surreal. It’s still surreal. I am waiting to wake up or for somebody to tell me that it was a nightmare or a horrible case of mistaken identity or really for somebody that knows all the facts to just tell me that the facts are not true. Just this one time can the facts not be true. I want the universe to lie to me. Just this once.

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I stayed around the hospital until 4. I told Jeremy goodbye. I kissed him. I hugged my brother Jamie, my wife, my parents, my grandparents. We cried. We cursed. We prayed. We cursed. We cried again. I’m still cursing. Still crying.

I came home to my in-laws. They came to get Charlie and I needed to be with my son. I hoped I would be able to sleep. I did not. I thought about everything. I read the text messages that we sent each other. Just on Tuesday. Dammit Jeremy. Send me another joke. Something funny from 9gag. Tell me about your classes Jeremy. Please. How was orientation, buddy? Are you excited? Have you decided what area of computing you want to study? Are you going to do graphics design? Dammit Jeremy text me and tell me it was all a lie and you’re fine and you’re excited about school, excited to see Charlie for Christmas. I am crying my eyes out right now buddy. I can’t see the screen.

It’s hard to comprehend how much the world has changed. I’ve written my Christmas letter to send to everybody. It’s fun and witty because I wanted you to enjoy it. I wrote that 2015 was good to us. We are supposed to get a cherry blossom tree to dedicate to mom and dad. I need you to get the plaque. I just got an email that a present I got for you has arrived at my house. It’s a hanger for your guitar, so you can put yours on the wall like I have for mine. I remember picking out the guitar with you. Very well. We got you an awesome amp. Played some Bombtrack. It was a very fun day with you.

I remember how you cried when you met Charlie for the first time. You were so sweet with him. You were a good uncle. He’ll know about you.

Dammit. I’m fine for a while then I get a wave, a tidal wave, that just comes over me and tumbles me around and I cry my eyes out. Then I get it together. Then I get a trigger. I think about my parent’s Christmas card. Oh god their Christmas card. When Shutterfly printed it off, Jeremy was alive, smiling. The Peachtree City post office is amazingly terrible. They’ve had the damn Christmas cards at their office since December 14. They’ve scanned this 3 pound box 5 times. They still haven’t delivered them. Jeremy never saw it. Dammit. Dammit. Dammit.

I think about going through your stuff. I don’t want to do that. I don’t want to have to. I worry about mom and dad. So much. I don’t know what they are going to do. I don’t know what I am going to do, but mom and dad. Mom.

I’m so excited to tell you about Charlie’s Christmas present. Remember those cardboard blocks we had as a kid? We built forts, knocked them down, threw them at each other, stood on them, made ramps, made walls, broke through them. I hid your toys in them and you did the same. We made a turret that went to the ceiling more than once. I can’t wait for you to play with them again. Play with them with Charlie. I think you’ll be 7 again. Dammit dammit dammit.

It’s been about 12 hours now. The word has gone around the family and close friends. I’m getting messages of love and support. Devastating. We are devastated. I heard the heart-wrenching devastating news. Devastated. That’s really the correct word. Nothing else really captures it. I am a sleepless shell with nothing inside. De vastare. Totally lay waste. That sums it up.

I went over to my parents house. I’ve never been so miserable. I don’t know if I have any tears left. Before I went to my parents house, I went to their old house. By chance, the mailman pulled in behind me. I stood in the middle of the road for them to deliver the damn Christmas card. They had it on the truck. The mail carrier handed it to me and said “Have a nice day.” It occurred to me that “Have a nice day.” is something that people say to each other. It’s normal. My world is so totally shattered and this mail carrier’s world is not. Have a nice day. Here are your Christmas cards. Such is the situation where the Christmas cards and Have a Nice Day are the most wretched of all wretched things.

I brought them into my parents house but did not announce them. I sat them next to my computer, which remained unopened. We all cried our eyes out again. I thought I got a lot of it out. Then we started talking about “plans”. We do not want to make plans. Not those plans. But it needed to be discussed. We don’t have a plot in Peachtree City. Our family has plots in Plains and in Arlington, Georgia. Mom asked dad if he wanted to bury him in Plains. He said probably but wanted to know if mom felt strongly about burying him in Arlington. She wanted dad to consider it. Then they asked me. I told them that it was up to them. They disagreed. My eyes welled up again. Jeremy did not want to be buried. He wanted to be cremated. I told them this. They remembered the conversation, but didn’t know if he was serious. He was. Many months or years ago he told us that if anything happened, he wanted to be cremated because he is claustrophobic. It took me three tries to get it out. Dammit.

More wailing sobs from the porch. My mom found the box of Christmas cards. It has 2 pictures of Jeremy. One is at my house with everybody but Jamie. The picture with Jamie is of the Christmas tree that he and Jamie cut down. It’s in my parent’s living room. There are presents for him under the tree.

I have a headache. I haven’t slept. I can’t sleep. My eyes are still puffy and the devastating, crushing, overwhelming pain comes in waves. I’m fine. I’m helping dad repair some furniture. Then I am very very not. It grips you and makes you scream out in agony. Then you control yourself and you start thinking about other things. Anything really. What kind of tree is that? What color are you going to stain the deck? How much was your chandelier? And then the wound rips wide open. Wide wide open. The trigger might be a half empty bottle of Caffeine Free Coca-Cola. A crushed cigarette pack. The image in my mind’s eye when Charlie runs out to him arms outstretched yelling Unka Jeremy!

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He had a whole battery of tests just a couple months ago. He couldn’t eat well and his legs ached. He had nearly every doctor at Emory look at him. They ended up prescribing him Vitamin A and Vitamin D. After all that. He got the full work over and really just needed vitamins. If a 28 year old heart is going to go out, shouldn’t they have found that? Maybe, but they didn’t. All I am really doing is negotiating with the universe, trying to find an inconsistency, trying to find a chink in the reality of events, the failure in the cosmic equation, hoping if I find the flaw that I can prove to the world that it didn’t actually happen and that Jeremy and I can laugh about it.

Dammit I am going to miss you buddy. I love you Jeremy.

Your loving brother Josh

75 replies on “Rest in Peace dear brother Jeremy. I love you.”

My heart hurts for you and your family. I loved how happy Jeremy was around Charlie. Prayers out to you and the family.

Oh Josh, this is so heartfelt!!!! I loved him so much! He had my wit and always made me laugh. Especially the time I got to Valerie s house with Samantha and Thomas for all of us to go trick or treating and he was dressed.as ME for Halloween ! He thought that was hilarious as did I! We will miss him so much and our hearts a heavy! We love yall!

Words cannot even express how heartbreaking this is. Jeremy looked so good the last time I saw him. This makes no sense. I send my love and support to you and your family. I will keep you in my prayers.

He and Jamie used to go skating as kids. They were my rink rats (but Jamie was so little, I would be surprised if he remembered me.) Jeremy and I kept in touch on fb. I used to tell him and Ben how they brightened my day every week, because they truly did. They made it their mission to make me laugh every Saturday afternoon that they came skating. The last time I talked to him was on fb and tagged him in a meme about nobody being as tough as your grandpa. ( it was of him building houses while battling cancer.) I can’t even begin to explain the pain that I have in my heart for your family. I will never forget his smile.

Love to you and the family. Such a difficult time. We love you and are here for you all. The pain is crushing. This is all so devastating.

Josh, Your Brother was lucky man to have a brother and family that obviously loved him to the max. Your pain must be unbearable but I hope your good memories of Jeremy will give you the strength you need as you go through the rest of the year.

Oh Josh, I am so sorry for all of you, and all this loss and pain. Your words paint the heart wrenching hurt, frustration, and the love underlying it all. That love Josh will be with you every day of your life, the love you share you will always share. It will be different but still strong. Just know you are loved by many and we will do whatever we can to walk beside you. Hold Charlie, hold Sarah, cry, and cry some more. None of this seems real, and all of it hurts. We love you.

My heart is broken for you, for Jamie, and for your sweet Mama and Daddy… and for everyone who loves your sweet brother. He was such a sweet soul!

I will always remember a kindness Jeremy extended to my elderly mother by dancing with her at Corban’s wedding during the Grandparents’ Dance when my father was unexpectly not to be found. Not many guys would assess the situation and act so graciously. God bless your family and God rest Jeremy.

Your heartfelt words rip at my heart for you and your family.
We were never intended to die. According to what I read in the
Bible. I will pray for comfort for you and your family. And if I may suggest, read the bible for comfort.

Damnit.
Tidal wave of grief opened the wound in my heart.
I feel you little brother.
Let’s all broken hearts unite.
Love.

Josh, I am so very sorry. I cannot even comprehend what you are feeling. I am sending you and your family, a big hug and lots of love. It makes no sense. Love, Joanne

Somewhere underneath the shock, my heart simply aches for all of you. Thank you for sharing this with us — your raw feelings are a brother’s testament to his place in your heart. I will pray for your whole family in this devastating time, and remember the sweet Jeremy I met on Cereto’s back deck. It seemed Jeremy never got to travel a straight line in life, and I will pray that he is now resting in peace.

I am so sorry for you and your family. I grew up friends with Jeremy and we went to McIntosh together. He was a really great guy. I loved hanging out with him. Again, I am so sorry.

Josh,
I am so sorry for your loss. I was the teacher assistant for both you and Jeremy at First Presbyterian kindergarten. He always a beautiful smile and loved doing the crafts at school. I pray for you and your family, especially Annette, no one deserves to loose their child. May all the fond memories you have comfort you during your saddest times.

Josh – you do not know me. I went to Georgia Southwestern College with your mother and only reacquainted with her and your dad a few years ago. The loss you have experienced is incalculable to me. I, being a new grandfather, would bear up but I would never be the same. Please give Annette and Jeff my most heartfelt love and sympathy. I pray for peace for all the Carters.

I know it sounds like blank words to you, but I’m painfully sorry for your temporary loss. I cried so hard reading your post, because I lost my 24-year old son, my only child, to the same thing three months ago. Dammit sums it up perfectly. You described everything perfectly. I don’t know any answers to anything except it’s all part of God’s perfect plan that we don’t know and can’t comprehend. (Insert dammit here) Please know I contacted my family the moment after I heard the news so we could pray for all of you. We did. We know how it feels, and we know how God can comfort. You’ll feel that warm, Godly hug more & more in the days and weeks to come. Be good to yourself in the meantime!!! My prayers for all of you will continue daily.

Josh,
I am so sorry for you and your family. Your Mom and Dad are two of the sweetest people I know. My heart aches for them. You are in are prayers tonight.

I am so sorry for your loss and pain. I lost my brother in August 2014, from a heart attack, he wasn’t as young as yours. It still hurts and I’m still angry when they are funny, loving people so full of life, you just don’t see it coming. Dammit!

When I heard the news, I didn’t want to believe it. I googled your family, hoping I was mistaken. There are so many ‘J’ names in the Carter family, I thought–maybe my memory was wrong. Maybe it wasn’t my friend’s brother. But it was.

I am so, so sorry. I can’t imagine what you or your folks are going through right now, and I hope to God I never have to find out. I’m going to call my brother right now and tell him I love him.

Hang in there, Josh.

Josh,
There are no words that will ever make you feel any better, and I can’t even imagine what your parents are feeling right now. I lost my brother last year it is something that you never get over. I pray for your family I also pray for your grandparents. No parent or grandparent should ever have to see the loss of a child. Please except my condolences.

I am a stranger to you but happened upon your blog through a news outlet. Reading your words i understand first that a very part of you has been taken away..second,that writing for you is as necessary as breathing. Tumbling your words and tears out has given so many people a chance to pray for you and your family. And not just associate your family with a media’s grab at a story. I lost my best friend of 27yrs unexpectedly this summer. I understand the waves of emotion. And it will continue…a song..timehop damnit..
Just wanted you to know your story touched my heart and i hope your family will find some comfort and healing in days to come.
Sincerely Amanda Brownlee SC

So very sorry for your loss my mom had a massive heart attack in January barley made it out.
Also lost my grandma to one and my husband’s dad passed away in September.
He got the call your dad’s in code blue we rushed to the hospital 45 minutes away he passed away 15 minutes before we got there.
You never no what is going to happen in life and its sad and hard.
All we can do is love each other and pray.
We are sending are deepest prayers in your time of loss.

God bless the brokenhearted ~ the spirit-weary. We don’t know each other, Josh ~ we have never met ~ (I went to school with LeAnne and others). I do know that shattered feeling ~ that devastated and empty and lost feeling … I have lost a sister ~ (almost) 14 months ago. I remain shattered ~ unable to put all of the pieces of me back together again … unsure if I even want to … knowing that I must. Y’all are in my prayers ~ Know that I, a stranger, will share in your loss … in your grief. I, a stranger, am here for y’all if I can do anything a’tall. RsmZ.

Josh,
I met Jeremy through my son Joey Roberts when they went to GSU together. They were such good friends back then. Joey would always come home for the weekend and tell me all the crazy things they’d get into up there. Birds of a feather those two.
We lost our Joey (to suicide) on July 6, 2011. My son Sammy found him and I gave him CPR until the paramedics took over. I don’t remember how I got to the ER that night. I don’t remember much of anything that night. I do remember them gathering the family and telling us that they couldn’t save Joey. The rest was a blur. I do remember not being able to hug him or kiss him goodbye because of the circumstances surrounding his death. I wanted to scream. He was my son! I wanted to hold him in my arms and tell him to wake up that everything would be okay.
I know your pain. I know how surreal everything was. I still cry. The grief is something I live with most days. Some days it is easier to bear than others.
I do remember Jeremy reaching out to us to convey his condolences. We had several conversations about Joey and their friendship and it made my heart feel good to hear his sweet words of comfort. Jeremy was also very supportive of the”Out of the Darkness walks to raise awareness for and the prevention of suicide. He joined us on several of those walks in Piedmont Park. Jeremy was truly a kind gentle spirit and my heart aches for you and your family.
Even though we do not know each other, please know that I am sharing your pain and your loss. Our heartstrings will be playing the same song.
I also know that your precious memories of your brother will carry you through the difficult days to come.
Sincerely in thought and prayer for you and your family.

My heart feels so much for you. Really and truly, what an immediate change you have shared, and it completely sucks. I just want to send much love your way and while reading this post it was like I was right there with you. I’m sad this is your truth now. I remember that horrible feeling, that never goes away. But LOVE with not, it never ever will. You are a very very good writer, many blessings for this painful time. Big Hug.

I am so shocked by this news, Josh. A few weeks ago I had lunch with your mom and she shared how Jeremy could make you laugh!! Please give her and your family my sympathies and love. Thank you for sharing your heartfelt feelings. I cannot imagine. Prayers for all of you. Love Donna Fitzpatrick.

Josh,
The word “waves” is very familiar. There are no words at this time I can give you but know that your beautiful tribute to your brother has helped me in so many ways. Continue to write. Continue to remember. Continue to share Jeremy’s name and his story. Even to strangers.

We had the honor of having your brother Jamie, who was the college roommate of my nephew’s son, both visit us in Joplin Missouri. We all found Jamie to be a delightful personality and a perfect house guest. I was shocked to hear about his brother’s death when I heard it on the radio. I want to wish you and all your family the deepest condolences from the DeMiers and MacLaughlins.

Your words are some of the most heartfelt, raw, honest words I have ever read. God bless you all during this tragic time. I know you don’t believe it right now, but things will get better.

Thank You for sharing this. My brother passed away at 44 in his sleep. HE didnt know his heart valve was leaking or something. 2005 on Christmas night, my 70 year old dad found him in bed the next day. Dad passed away 21 days later. he had cancer. I cant stop crying after reading this, the pain you described in waves has came back to visit me. It will come and go for years at unexpected moments. My hope is in Jesus which brings me comfort. I couldn’t sleep for days back then so I know what your saying. I send my love to you and your whole family, This breaks my heart to read what you’ve written. May your hope be in the Lord.

I found your blog through a link about your brother passing away, I knew nothing about you or your brother prior to this but now am sitting here crying while reading your post. I have 3 sons and I cannot imagine how painful it would be to lose one, both for them and for myself…unthinkable. I know sorry isn’t enough but I want to send my deepest condolences to you and your family.

I completely understand your anguish, your discord, your anger, your exhaustion.
The senselessness. The seemingly preventable loss. The uselessness of it all.
I understand the emotional and mental cliff you were pushed off.
I know that the holidays make it that much harder.
I’ve been there personally.
All of these thoughts and feelings are ok.
I wish I could tell you it will all go away…but it won’t. However, you’ll get to know each aspect closely and you’ll become, in a way, not to sound morbid, …used to it. It will become part of you and part of your love and memories of your brother…it will make them that much sweeter. You’ll not take moments or people for granted ever again.
You’ll be ok eventually. He wouldn’t want you to languish over him…I’m sure.
Grief counseling has helped many people. Don’t be afraid or ashamed to go if you think or know you need to.
Your family will be in my prayers.
It will be ok. It will…One day.

Lifting you and your family up in prayer for peace and strength. May God’s shinning light be your support in the days and months ahead!
I lost my dear sister Sandra in May and still can’t believe she’s not around to share with. I trust that she is now under Jesus’ loving care and thank Him for His live and mercy toward us.
Blessings Josh to all of you in this unimaginable difficult time!
Jesus, in You we trust!

Josh,
Your words for your brother are so very heartfelt and raw. I can not fathom the pain through which you are going, but you are in my thoughts. I have no doubt that your brother is at peace knowing how truly loved he was.

Josh, I’m just so heartbroken for you, Sarah, Charlie, and your whole family. I was shocked to hear the news, and have been praying for you and crying with you. Please let me know if there’s anything I can do to help in any way.

Josh,

Jeremy was a friend of mine from GSU. He was an amazing friend and man. We bonded together over shared issues and often leaned on each other for support. I am deeply saddened and offer my sincerest condolences. Please let me know if you need anything. The world has lost a kind, wonderful person this weekend.

Josh, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I send my deepest condolences to you and your family. Unfortunately, I never had the privilege to meet Jeremy; however, I know your brother Jamie quite well. I will say a prayer for you and your entire family.

After reading your post, I was, and am in tears. You are in the same place I was last October when I received news of my son (USMC) who died at 24. My biggest, and sincerest condolences.

I lost my mom when she was only 32. At the interment our preacher angrily threw his hat on the ground as be walked up to the grave. It was his way of saying, “Damnit!”

Only two things will ease your pain: faith and time. But they do work!

Josh,

Thank you so much for sharing this. I have nothing but admiration for your entire family and can only take solace in knowing that you must have an incredible support structure.

I’m wondering if I met Jeremy in Oslo in 2002. I was in Norway and found myself in front of the Grand Hotel while your grandfather came out on a balcony and waived to a crowd with pride. A young kid stood next to me and we somehow struck up a quick conversation. He told me he was in Norway for his Grandfather’s Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech – all I could muster was “Holy S$%^! Are you kidding? I love your Grandfather and just take a look – so does Oslo. Be proud.” I’m unsure if this was another grandchild or indeed Jeremy, but I’ll never forget this chance encounter with the Carter family.

With love,
Chris

I also lost my boyfriend the same way your Brother passed away. It’s been 2 years ago and it was the most difficult time of my life. I just wanted to say that my heart and thoughts go out to you and your family.

I’m so sorry this happened. My sister passed in an accident earlier this year. If you or your family ever need someone to talk to, feel free to email me–even if it’s months down the road.

Josh, my prayers are with you and your family during this difficult time. I was looking at the picture of Jeremy by the Vail police car and it brings me back to the fun we all had. Hold on to those good memories. I pray for peace and comfort for you.

No words anyone can write could even begin to take away the pain you all are experiencing. Sending many prayers and kindness to you and your entire family. Jeremy seemed like a wonderful brother. He had an amazingly bright smile.
Hugs from Australia.

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