The Tork family 6 month update
Well we just passed the 6 month mark and we felt it was time to send everyone an update on how we are doing. If you had asked us back then we would have told you we would never make it this far and we would have been very wrong. Not only are we still making it it but we are actually doing ok considering the depth of our loss. God is with us and protecting us! I want to personally thank all of you from the depths of my soul for everything you have done for my family and I. You helped us initially spread the word about our tragedy and we believe beyond any doubt that YOU helped save countless lives by helping us bring this activity out of hiding. God has made his presence felt in many miraculous ways during our journey and with the many things we have seen our faith grows stronger day by day. We made a vow to each other the night that Kevin died that we would not let this tragedy tear us away from God or from each other ever and we are healing as a family. It was however all your thoughts and prayers that also helped us to be strong enough to get to that point where we could start to heal. There just arent words to describe the gratitude we feel for what you all have done for us.
I would also like to update you on the battle we are fighting to stop the choking game. Some of you may not know this but through Gods power and through your efforts to fwd our story we were able to get all the way to the Today show in New York just 3 weeks after Kevin passed. We also had two local Tv interviews and two articles printed in the Issaquah press. We also found out later that our story spread across this country like a firestorm and was picked up by countless online news agencies and many newspapers. I cannot even begin to imagine how many people read about Kevin and then told others. We received hundreds of emails thanking us for having the courage to speak out and I was able to speak at two local schools right before school let out last year. And none of it would have happened with out YOUR help and I would like each of you to know YOU helped save lives!
But despite all the efforts to get the awareness out there, kids are still dying, and many many people still have never heard of this until it hits close to home. We have had 28 reported deaths since Kevin died. We believe that only about 10 % of the choking game deaths actually make the news. If that math is correct that about 280 kids world wide since March 30th.
I was contacted two weeks ago by a mom in Tennessee who lost her oldest son Aug 3rd of this year. He was 1 month away from his 18 th birthday. She found our story online and she told me that before she read about us she didn’t know there were others out there who had experienced the same thing she did. She didn’t know there were other families that had the same incredible relationships with their kids as she had with hers only to have them taken away by this “game”. After reading our story she said her faith was renewed and her determination grew and she found the courage to speak out as well. She did a newspaper interview last wed and her husband and her son are probably going to do a local tv interview this week. I mention this because it was through YOUR help that she was able to find our story and was able to find some comfort in an otherwise unbearable agonizing pain.
During the month of Aug between the 3rd and the 11th there were 4 deaths reported. Out of respect for the families I will not mention last names but they were Jay( 17) Mayia (15), Travis (15), and Gordon (13). The worst part was they were all exactly like Kevin, good kids, smart kids, amazing kids!
These families are just now starting on this same journey of loss, and it is for those families that have yet to experience the loss of their amazing children that I want to ask you again to help us continue to spread the word about this activity. We have a blog site: forkevinssake.wordpress.com
Our story is there on that site. You can also find the links to the media events as well as links to other choking game websites. There is one in particular I would like to ask each of you to go see. Its: http://www.thechokinggame.net On the upper left side of the home page is a section marked “victims”. I would like to ask that you scroll through that list and see for yourself how many have made that list alone, and remember this is only about 10 % of the actual number of kids that have died. I know this is an uncomfortable subject and if you are not comfortable with this its ok. We don’t want to place any undo pressure on anyone. Please understand though its not just for our children that we ask this of you. Our children are with God. Its for your children and the children of your friends and family that we ask this of you.
I know in today’s world God is not always a strong presence in day to day life and it always seems to be a deep tragedy that has to unfold to bring us back to him. Its always him we turn to first. We are a prime example of that process. We want to tell you though that God does exist. We will not list here the many miracles we have seen but we will happily share with you what we have experienced. I do though want to tell you that without Gods power and love we would not be doing well at all. He comforts us and guides us and he makes things happen to help us even though we dont always see it. People keep telling us how strong WE are. We are not strong. We are only strong with his help. I owe everything to him and I beg each of you to say a prayer of thanks to him for what he has given you. If the sea of life has caused you to drift away from him then I beg of you to paddle back. Get him back in your lives BEFORE a tragedy strikes. We don’t question why this has happened to us anymore. We were given those answers but we do wonder if God had been in our lives more that maybe we would have given to our son different knowledge and just maybe he would have been better prepared to deal with the temptation to try this so called fun, safe “game”. We miss that boy beyond words but we do thank God each day for the 15 incredible years we had with him and we also thank him for allowing us to have each of you in our lives as well.
I am so honored to be in this community and I am humbled by the power of the support you so freely gave to us and I believe that each of you has the power to make a difference in someone else’s life. Please share this email with every one you feel comfortable sending it to. Please stand with me and together we can stop this senseless tragic lie that is the choking game. If anyone would like to talk with us personally please don’t hesitate to contact us we would love to hear from you.May God watch over each of you and protect your very precious children.
Ken Kathy Kevin & Kelly Tork