Jason Iverson Is Dead

Angela Ellingson and Jason IversonSome twenty years ago, living a life so radical and subversive that it fills me with anxiety just to think of it, I met Angela Ellingson. We were infatuated with each other, I suppose — although not in any sexual way. We were more like 5-year-olds on the playground who thought each other very keen. But friendship had clearly bothered my girlfriend at the time (later my wife) and her boyfriend at the time (later her husband, it would seem). We were kindred spirits: militant, bookwormish, and broadly curious.

Her boyfriend Jason Iverson, was also a friend of mine. He took on mythic proportions in my fiction. He was interesting and intelligent, but what fascinated me about him was his day-by-day control of a life that was, by my way of looking at things, out of control. Where I hid from troubles Jason confronted them and generally prevailed. He was the kind of man that I’ve always wanted to be like. Or at least more like.

Jason Iverson Died

Two years ago, I wrote, “There are few people from the past I want to have any contact with. But I wouldn’t mind hearing from Angela or Jason.” So when I joined Facebook, I looked up Angela. Her last post was on 11 April 2015 and it read, “Happy Birthday Jason, I miss you.” That was ominous. So I clicked over to Jason’s page where the last post was on 20 September 2014, written by Angela:

I know many of you already know this as Jason and I shared many friends, but not all. Jason died on Monday, September 15 from complications from being hit by a car while crossing the street of Friday the 12th. I am not going to continue his Facebook page forever as I think that is kind of creepy but I wanted his friends to know what had happened. He apparently had a blood clot that reached his brain causing a stroke while he was asleep, but as he wasn’t being monitored it wasn’t noticed immediately. He was resuscitated but he as he was without oxygen for 17 minutes after it was noticed he was in distress, he was brain dead and his mother and I had him removed from life support as he was already gone.

Senselessness

It seems inconceivable to me. Jason was always “the man.” How could such a thing happen? Although it does have resonance for me. I often tell people that drivers are trying to kill me as I walk about. It is meant as a joke. But to most drivers, pedestrians are like insects flying across the street: nothing to worry much about. As a result, I’m hyper-vigilant. When you are a pedestrian, you are in a war zone. What I mean by my little joke is that you should treat drivers as if they were trying to kill you.

I’m extremely sad that Jason is dead. And that it should have happened due to something I worry about excessively, makes it all the worse. He was a musician who I never got a chance to play with, and now I never will. Now I’ll never even talk to him, although I do remember our last conversation where he related an amazing true story of his life.

As for Angela, it must have been — and probably still is — crushing. They were together 23 years. I’ve never managed much more than a few years in any relationship.

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

14 thoughts on “Jason Iverson Is Dead

  1. I am sorry you lost your friend. :(

    I remember the first time I found out a friend from the past had died via Facebook. It was also due to a car accident. The guy was one of those popular with everyone guys who had a brilliant future ahead of him. And shortly after he finished his mission (he was Mormon) he was killed in an accident. It was such a waste and it still bothers me to this day.

    • Yes, I find I feel worse over time about it. Mostly, I feel bad for Angela. They met at about 20 and were together for the next two decades. I am sad.

      • I have even worse luck then you do so I am in awe they made it last and sadden that they aren’t together anymore.

        • Some small comfort: at least it was a random accident. Sometimes partners blame themselves (if I’d only helped more with their depression, if we never had that argument before they had to drive to work, etc.) And partners should never blame themselves unless they were abusers. (And abusers rarely blame themselves!) So hopefully she’s spared that agony.

          • Yes, I would hope. But I’ve always found that I remember everything I did wrong when a relationship is over. It’s hard. Regardless.

            • Self-criticism makes us better. I tend to take it too far. I blame myself for mistakes I made in first grade. And regard everything good I’ve ever done as right place/right time/blind luck. Taken too far, you stop improving and fall in a mental hole! It’s a balancing act, like everything. Sounds like your friend was an absolute genius at it.

              • It’s important to own your wrongs. But it’s a mistake to allow them to mentally torture you. I was tortured by something (actually fairly minor) I did in the 5th grade. I went through a program (literally: a phone app). And ever sense, that emotional connection has been gone. I remember the event. I accept full responsibility. But there is no emotion to it. I don’t shudder. I don’t have to stop thinking about it. I can see it in an objective way. It’s weird because it was something that bothered me greatly for 35 years. And such a minor thing! So much less than things done to me. Yet I was able to say of others, “They were just 9 years old!” I couldn’t say that about myself.

                It’s rather like, “Him with His Foot in His Mouth.”

        • It was a curious relationship too, in that Angela was very much a loner. But they suited each other well.

          • Sometimes you meet the one person who does have what you need and you give them what they need.

            And sometimes you don’t.

            • And needs change over time, which complicates matters. Love ain’t always enough, no matter what songs say.

              • That’s the biggest thing about romance. In general, my relationships (romantic and not) start with an exciting period of getting to know the person and then a leveling off liking or disliking. I really can’t imagine wanting to be the same person in a romantic sort of relationship for a long time. I’m easily bored in these situations. And I want to spend most of my time alone. But others are different and that’s great.

  2. Jason was my beloved son and I miss him terribly every day. I came across your posting just now, as a surprise, and I was very moved by your observations about him and that you took the time to write them. Thank you very much. I am sure Jason would have been so very grateful.

    • Thank you. It still seems unbelievable to me. But that’s unfortunately the way life is. I’ve very sorry for your loss especially.

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