Today’s episode is a tough one. A week ago, my friend Shawn Morton died. I tried to write something about him 5-6 times this week to let out my feelings and share my reflections with everyone, but fell apart every time I tried. So I decided I would just open up the show and talk about him.
But, while I wish to certainly remain respectful of his family, I have a lot to say because Shawn took his own life. I’ve experienced the suicide of a friend before, many years ago. It never leaves you. So as the week went on I gathered my thoughts and decided to share what I hope are both helpful suggestions and honest admissions that can further open the conversation around depression, mental illness, suicide and how we can all help one another — and ourselves — avoid this type of fate.
Shawn Morton filled this world with laughter and love. My hope is this very raw conversation can help more of those who do the same stick around longer to continue doing so.
Shawn’s obituary appeared in the Charleston (W.Va.) Gazette Mail Sunday.
The family is still recovering from the shock and handling logistics of Shawn’s home, etc. Several people close have told me an appropriate memorial fund to benefit Shawn’s children will be established soon. I will update this page with that information then.
Finally, we love you Smorty. Keep rockin’ wherever the cosmos takes you, brother.
Photo by Tamar Weinberg.