Day: March 20, 2011

Unimaginable tragedy

An unimaginable tragedy happened to a friend of mine 5 years ago that I just found out today. 

For about two years (1999-2001), my family lived in a Burlington apartment on Energy Park Drive in St. Paul, Minnesota.

One of our neighbors in the apartment building is a Chinese from Shanghai. Qinuo was married to a jewish doctor named Edward Van Dyk. Their boy Carl was the same age as my son. So they played together. When Qinuo’s mother came to visit from Shanghai, she became friends with my parents who were visiting as well. 

After the Van Dyks moved to Dartmouth College around 2000, we lost contact.

Today I talked to Qinuo’s mother in Shanghai on the phone and heard the horrible tragedy that happened to her daughter. She was surprised that I didn’t know about it, because the news not only appeared in the US, but also in Shanghai.  

Thanks to Internet, a quick Google search brought up the sad story that happened on Sat., May 27, 2006. Apparently, it was a big news and reported by the news media including AP, CBS, Fox, etc.

Even if I heard about it at the time, I probably won’t have made the personal connection. 

Edward Van Dyk killed his two young sons, Spencer, 4, and Carl, 8, by throwing them off the 15th floor of a luxury South Miami Beach hotel before leaping to his death, while the couple was on vacation to celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary.

The full story can be found here:

Man who killed his sons, self left no note (USA Today)

The Miami Herald

This is an unimaginable tragedy no matter whom it happened to. But when it happens to someone you personally know, it becomes even more tragic and unimaginable.

I can’t imagine what my friend has gone through in the last 5 years. I am praying for her. May God bring her peace, comfort and strength as she faces every day and rebuilds her life.

I also pray for her mother. She said she still cries and can’t sleep whenever she thinks about it. She worries about her daughter. A tragedy like this will break every mother’s heart.

God bless the mother and daughter.