It’s hard to believe that we have now been without Lloyd for 11 years. A brother, a son and a good friend to so many. It’s easy to put those we have lost on a pedestal and always talk about the positives. As Lloyd’s brother I could tell many stories of the typically sibling rivalry and the arguments we used to have. But despite this I cannot remember a time when Lloyd could be described as anything other than a caring, kind and a truly decent human being.
When I had my first epileptic seizure Lloyd was there. Having not long lost a friend in school to a sudden brain haemorrhage Lloyd was terrified when he found me unconscious with blood coming from my mouth. He looked after me, helped me to a safe place and called my parents. I didn’t realise how concerned he was for my welfare until my parents told me he thought I was going to die.
When, in a slightly drunken state, I spontaneously announced in front of one of his friends I was gay, he didn’t ridicule me or look at me in disgust, he simply said ‘Adam you are my brother and if your gay then that makes no difference to me, you will always be my brother.’ He was only 14 years at the time. In that situation and at that age even the most gracious person might try to save face in front of friends, make a joke or brush over it but he showed nothing but kindness, compassion and maturity.
So you see Lloyd was a very special person. He was my brother and my friend. We grew closer as we got older and confided in each other, laughed and joked. I only wish I had more time with him, to see how much our bond would grow and also the sort of person he would become. It is so terribly sad to have such a person taken from the world and from our family.
To me Lloyd was a part of my identity, he shaped me as a person and losing him was like losing a part of me. I swore when he died that I would never deny his existence and that I would always have a brother. Its much easier said than done. When I was once asked the question, ‘do you have a brother’ I said yes. That lead to more questions and instead of flattening the atmosphere by sharing the truth I found myself making things up, saying he was in the military, it was so hard then to admit the truth. I now find myself saying ‘no’ to that question to save the lies but every time I say ‘no’ it hurts so much.
No one should ever have to go through this and I hope that through the work of Stand Against Violence less people will have to know what this is like. Thank you to all who support us and all who engaged in National Day of Non Violence to honor Lloyd’s memory. It is tragic that we have to do this but Lloyd has not died in vain and his memory will live on through me, through SAV, through us all and our actions. Not just on this day but always. Violence must end and only by standing together can we achieve this.
Happy birthday Lloyd, I wish you were here to celebrate it.