U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden lived that nightmare, back in 1972, just as he was launching his career in the Senate. And over this past weekend, one of his two surviving sons from his first marriage, Beau, passed away from cancer at age 46.
I think I first heard about the Biden family's story around the time of the 2008 election. If I remember correctly, both Beau (who introduced his dad at the Democratic national convention) and his father referred to the tragedy in their convention speeches.
A couple of years ago, I caught the VP on the news, giving a speech unlike any other I could ever recall a politician making. He was addressing a group called TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors), which offers support to anyone grieving the death of someone who served in the military. He spoke frankly about his loss, and how it had affected him personally. And he offered hope to the bereaved: things do get better, eventually.
It's an amazing speech, and if you have 20 minutes to watch the full thing, here it is:
If you only have a few minutes, watch this excerpt that was shown on Rachel Maddow's show:
My heart goes out to the Biden family as they mourn the loss of their son.
You can find more of this week's #MicroblogMondays posts here.