Journey in Words

This is my maiden voyage into uncertain waters…a sea of blogs. The ship is readied for sail and all tickets punched. It’s time to weigh anchor and head to stories unknown.

For my initial blog, some seaworthy friends tendered sage advice as to which direction the trade winds should send me. These fine bards have traveled often with pen in hand.

Should I start with a story about my latest book Cramped Quarters Mary’s Trunk and show all who dare to sail with a Victorian ghost named Mary who we purchased inside her trunk some years ago for a meager fee? No, not that yarn just yet, but in the future, she’ll show here.
You can locate our ghost Mary and the genesis of her haunting by clicking this link to Amazon. More books are coming soon in her story.

Maybe, it would be prudent to begin a running tale of how haunted items can be acquired while frequenting tag sales, collectibles and antique shops and shows? My wife and I have an ongoing love and affair with finding those rare items which pique our interest. We’ve done so for decades. This would also be a fine trip to embark upon, but I think not…yet.

Where to begin? This is always the searing question when we start the process of putting words to paper.
Ah, the simple answer rings true, as I type.

Begin at the beginning.

Let me tell you a story.

My Frozen Heart

The Becky Davis Story

Little Billy

It was October 10, 2008 at 12:15 in the afternoon when the local police dispatcher answered the 9-1-1 call, “911, Dispatcher 41, what’s your emergency, please?”

“Oh my God, oh, God no! Help! Quick, send somebody quick, our son, hurry! Hurry! Our only son he’s dying.

“Oh my God, he’s dead. Billy’s so cold. My God, please!” A lady’s tear-filled voice shouted hysterically to the police dispatcher.
“Ma’am, you have to calm down, please. Tell me what has happened. Help is on the way. Fire rescue and a police unit are en route. They’ll be there very soon. Tell me what happened to your son. But, you must calm down and help me to help your son. Do you understand, ma’am?” The calming, authoritative voice of the dispatcher instructed the caller.

“God, please, please, Lord, tell them to hurry, please, please. Our son is only a little boy. He’s only six. He turned six last week. I found him lifeless in the garage. I’ve tried everything. He’s not responding. I’m alone here and my son’s dead.
“Help us, God.

“There’s a spilled bottle of antifreeze next to his body. He must have drank the antifreeze. Billy drank the antifreeze. It’s all over his face and little hands.

“Oh my God! He’s dead, God. How am I going to tell his Dad…how, Lord, how? It’s all my fault. I left him alone playing in the garage for too long. It’s all my fault. I’ve killed our son.

“I’ve tried everything. It’s so sweet. Lord, I tried. Forgive me, God. Please forgive me Billy, Billy, Billy.

“My God, how can I tell his father?” Billy’s devastated mother held him in one arm as she advised this to the police dispatcher.
We know this is what actually occurred from the police department tapes of the 9-1-1 call that day as well as the police investigative reports, autopsy exam and report, and from the eventual court proceedings.

Billy, their only son had died a horrible death that October day. He was ultimately pronounced dead on arrival at a hospital. According to all reports, police and fire rescue units arrived within two minutes of receiving the dispatch.

Billy was laid to rest a few days later. For a brief period, Billy’s mother refused to allow the undertaker to lower his casket into the cold Georgia red clay. She draped her frail shaking body over her son’s small white casket and begged to be lowered with him. Billy’s father eventually assisted her from the closed casket.

We also know police investigators at the scene found the lifeless body of Toto the family’s pet poodle. Their pet had also ingested the sweet poison. His contorted body was discovered in a far corner of the garage where he had crawled behind a storage box and died. He had suffered in the same horrific fashion as Billy. Toto’s remains were taken away by Animal Control.

Billy’s body was transported by ambulance with sirens screaming and lights flashing to the nearest hospital. The emergency room trauma doctors and nurses tried as best they could to bring Billy back. Of course, it was too late. His mother knew it was too late when she had made the call.
When ingested, antifreeze can be a killer.

Nationwide this scene or many like it have played out. On average, each year across the United States of America, 6,000 children die miserably painful deaths from ingesting antifreeze. In Georgia alone, last year 235 children were poisoned like this. Some of these innocent children died a lingering death. Thankfully, a large number of victims survived the sweet but deadly liquid. Adults were also poisoned. Some have died.
At least, it would seem Billy went faster. He must have ingested more of the product. It’s no comfort to know why some die more quickly. I’d assume many don’t.

Neither Billy’s mom nor his Dad were to blame, but no one will succeed in convincing them of this.
We realize who is at fault here.

I can’t begin to imagine how many children and adults die worldwide from this poison!

Every year countless hundreds of thousands of pets and wild animals die in this same fashion across the globe.
We know about the children and adults who succumb to this tasty poison, simply because we gather statistics on poisonings, unexplained and unusual deaths. Autopsies will generally expose the agent behind the human tragedies. Those who have lived through it will tell you how sweet and pleasing the liquid tastes. It’s deceptively deadly when ingested by humans and animals. In this respect, antifreeze is actually nefarious.
How could this go on for so long in this country and around the world? How? Why? Can you or anyone explain this to me or to Billy’s Mom and Dad? Will they, the men and women within the corporations that manufacture and sell this product by the millions of gallons yearly, explain this to us?

Something had to be and must still be done about this, as the deaths continue to mount.
A young determined lady from Georgia named Becky Davis who loves pets did precisely that within the State of Georgia after her dog Chief became a victim of this antifreeze travesty. Becky Davis was and is a victim, too.

This is Becky Davis’ story.

Ron Shaw

Copyright 2015

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28 Responses to Journey in Words

  1. A tragic ending to an all too common scenario. Ron Shaw has seen it all. As a seasoned Atlanta Police Officer, there is nothing he hasn’t encountered, hasn’t witnessed. There is nothing like the site of a lifeless child in the arms of his despairing mother that doesn’t knock you down a few pegs. His reality becomes yours as he describes an absolutely preventable occurrence, a reality for far too many of us. Listen to this story.

    • Ron Shaw says:

      Kathy, your words ring true, and you, as well as they, are greatly-appreciated.
      We do love adverbs in the South, as well as, the occasionally use of ‘very.’

    • ronshaw says:

      Kathy, you will always be appreciated by me. Thank you for visiting my Website, reading my first blog and commenting on them.
      Your insights are spot-on.

  2. Great story, Ron! Everyone loves 911 stories and you had me hooked right from the get-go. Good dialog and action. Showing the mother screaming holding her son. The dog was a good touch, too. At first we wonder whether the mother “did it” but then when the dog died, too, we knew it was an accident.
    Then you bring in the stats and wrap it up with a “call to do something” about it, leaving us wanting to know more about Becky Davis and her crusade.
    Just the right length for a blog, too. Not too long.
    Good start.

    • Ron Shaw says:

      Dorothy, your insights are amazing. You’re too kind but I’m honored by your comments and it’s been a blessing from the day we ‘met.’
      You are a dear!
      Ron Shaw recently posted…Journey in WordsMy Profile

    • ronshaw says:

      Dorothy May Mercer, you’re a blessing to all who are priviledged to know you.
      Your comments are always very much appreciated and your sage advice followed.
      I’m pleased as punch that you visited my Website, read my blog and were kind enough to comment on them.
      If I’ve written anything that impresses such an excellent author and publisher as you, I’m humbled and honored by your insightful observations.
      God bless you, Dorothy.

  3. Ron Shaw, sailor of lights, in your trip in the sea of the word and ideas..Good Luck!!
    The Billy’s history is very touching!!!

    • Ron Shaw says:

      Hector, thank you very much for honroing me by reading my blog, and I’m humbled by your kind words.
      Ron Shaw recently posted…Journey in WordsMy Profile

    • ronshaw says:

      Hector, thank you so much for visiting my site. I am very pleased that you read my blog and thought enough of and it and possibly me to post your encouraging comments.
      You are appreciated by me, my Twitter friend.

  4. Ron Shaw, sailor of lights, in your trip in the sea of the word and ideas..Good Luck!!
    The Billy’s history is very touching..

  5. Good luck with the blogging Ron. You are off to a fantastic start with this post. A beautifully written story about the tragic tale of Billy. You had me hooked from the start and although I knew I would be saddened by this tale I was still compelled to read on. You handled this with much care and understanding, something you must have gained with all the things you have witnessed trough out the years. Looking forward to seeing more of your writing.

    • ronshaw says:

      Corrina, thank you. I’m happy you visited my new site, read the blog and responded. Your comments are very kind. You’re very much appreciated by me.
      I’m hoping you’ll stop in again and visit my site. More stories will come as they present themselves.
      Take care and God’s speed on your book.

  6. KG says:

    A dash of clever sprinkled with mischief describes
    Ron & his Twitter posts.
    Discovered Ron through a mutual friend
    ,a guest author on his
    Radio talk show. Delightful!
    Since then authors are scrambling from
    all over the Twiterverse to be on his program.
    Can’t wait to find out more by reading
    his novels.

    • ronshaw says:

      KG, your kind words are more than that. They are also gracious, and you, as well as they, have made my month. Please, know that I’m no writer, but merely a storyteller in print.
      I’ll apologize in advance for any signs of being human within my books. It is my fervent intention to be the first author to pen a perfect book. To date, I’ve fallen short of that lofty goal, but the desire burns within me.
      Thank you for being my friend within the Twitterverse, Facebookville and all of the other social media sites where you and I like to play. More fun is in store for all of us. Keep it tuned in, turned on and tweeterrific, KG! Ron

  7. Ron, You have a way of writing a story that makes the reader feel as though you are sharing it with them…one-on-one, for the very first time. I was easily drawn in, living the story through your eyes – along with the depth of emotion, penetrating one’s heart, without asking. You show respect for your “characters” as individuals, with compassion and understanding for their circumstances. I would say that the “signs of being human” you referred to above, are working for you. The pain of “Billy’s Story” comes through in what is heard behind the words…the humanness readers can relate to, and the care with which it was written. A very heartfelt and touching story.
    Suzanne L Holko recently posted…Every Child…Wins?My Profile

    • ronshaw says:

      Suzanne, your visit to my new Website is very much appreciated, and I’m humbled that my initial blog was well-received. Your thoughtful, warm and inspiring comments touched me. I’m beyond pleased that you read my books, tweets, Facebook musings and blog.
      Plese, know that you’ll always have an open door to my words and heart. I’m honored to have met you and consider you to be a true friend.
      Hope your snow’s finally melting way up yonder, but CT sounds like the perfect wintry haven for pecking away marvelous stories.

  8. I appreciate your kind words, Ron. I am grateful for your guidance along this journey, and your friendship. You have helped ease the transition of this “newbie,” onto a less-overwhelming path. I enjoy your style of writing. You leave an opening for the reader to connect, within their own imagination. All too many books and movies these days are “in-your-face” vivid, leaving little to the imagination. I believe that can work against creativity…especially where children are concerned. You bring your readers to a point within the story (from what I have read thus far), and then step back. It gives the reader an opportunity to enter the story, on a personal level – and connect with it. Your approach shows a respect for the characters, by not delving further. What needs to be told…is. There was an author on your show not long ago, who made a similar reference. She said something to the effect of, “The writing stops, when the door closes…” The rest is left up to the reader. It empowers the story…lending itself to creativity, within the reader’s imagination. Imagination is becoming a lost art. When Billy (in “TYBB”) was screaming on the bridge in the rain storm, it was vivid. However, this also left room to ponder the balance of truth, given “Baby Whale’s” level of compassion and understanding…at the age of 12. Looking forward to “Seven Fish Tree.” The snow cannot vacate the premises fast enough, here in CT. I will send along a picture when the flowers have (hopefully) blossomed in it’s place! Relative to your reference of, “the perfect wintry haven… ” – Inspiration does have a way of rising to the occasion, within the challenges of “cabin fever.” We shall see…! Take care, be well. Suzanne
    Suzanne L Holko recently posted…Every Child…Wins?My Profile

    • ronshaw says:

      Suzanne, snow must be the greatest muse because your words have brought an old man two teary eyes. They are tears of joy that flow when two people come together and meet for the first time to become friends. You have a special gift, Suzanne. I love how you write and the purity of power within your message. Your voice is apparent and strong and yet, as gentle as falling snow in Connecticut. It’s obvious to this old man, that cabin fever seems to be perfect for you providing ample time to create words of beauty. I’m looking so forward to your ‘appearance’ on The Ron Shaw Show. You’ll be a huge hit. I know this. I’m also excited to read your books. You’re a great writer, my friend. Thank you, Suzanne L. Holko

    • ronshaw says:

      Suzanne, I’m honored and humbled by your kind words. Since the moment we met, you’ve been a blessing to me. I cherish our friendship and am looking forward to many excellent conversations with you.
      The fact that you are a well-established writer and author adds a heightened level of meaning for me in respect to your gracious comments.
      Thank you for being there for me. I will be here for you.

  9. Billy’s story just plain outright broke my heart, Ron. No other way of putting it. Every parent’s worst nightmare. You tell it straight and that is the most powerful way of telling any story. But it wasn’t just a story. It was someone’s life. I hope those poor parents were able to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives and find a way to go on.
    I look forward to more of the Ron Shaw writing experience. I’m Shaw there’s a lot more to come!

    • ronshaw says:

      Carole, I appreciate your comments, and I’m happy that you visited my site. This book MY FROZEN HEART The Becky Davis Story is going very slowly, but it will be written. It’s based on a true story of human greatness.
      Yes, more must come. 🙂

  10. Jess Alter says:

    Ron, what you wrote moved me deeply. Poisonings in the home are a mostly-preventable tragedy; thank you for reminding parents and pet owners that heightened vigilance is necessary around the chemicals we use (and often take for granted) in daily life.

    I hope you don’t mind, but I am adding the poison safety links to Safe Kids Worldwide and to Pet Poison Helpline:
    Jess Alter recently posted…#MondayBlogs Round Up (30 March 2015)My Profile

    • ronshaw says:

      Jess, I don’t mind at all. Quite the contrary, I’m delighted to see the links and it distributed. This is a WIP, MY FROZEN HEART The Becky Davis Story. Listen to her show by the link. Becky is an incredibly brave lady. She fought large odds and pushed through legislation in Georgia to save lives, humans and animals.
      Jess, your comments are very much appreciated by me and thank you for reading my initial blog. Going forward, more chapters of this story will be posted on my Website.
      I’ve been clicking around at your site and will get into reading your blogs soon.
      Thanks again for being a friend.

    • ronshaw says:

      Jess, I wanted to add a few things to my earlier response to your comments on this blog.
      I’m pleased and blessed to know you as a friend.
      I’m humbled and honored by your words. To receive such comments from a fellow author of your stature is beyond satisfying. It’s nothing short of amazing on a deep, personal level.
      Jess, thank you.

  11. Liv Fox says:

    Ron, that is an extremely sad story, and unfortunately I have heard similar incidents that have happened here too across the pond in little old England. It must have felt a long lasting impression on you.
    Ron I enjoy reading anything you write as you bring your script alive with every word you use. You have a way of reaching your readers by infusing them mentally into your stories. They flow like silk letting you taking it all in and wanting you to read more and more. Ron I love your writing and you as a human being. You are generous, altruistic and ALWAYS there to help. LibbyFox.

    • ronshaw says:

      Libby, thank you for being here with me. I feel a true connection with you even though we are an ocean apart. Your comments have touched my heart. You are and will always be appreciated by me.
      It’s as good as it gets to receive praise from other authors and especially by those who write as beautifully as you.
      Thank you author Libby Fox from that warm, smiling place within my heart.
      Whale…who some call Ron.

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