Sunday, May 24, 2009

a town says good-bye

A community came out today and wrapped its arms around a family who recently lost a father and a son.101_0272

Al and Bailey Calvillo were returning from a Milwaukee Bucks basketball game when their lives were cut short by a drunk driver. They were pronounced dead at the scene.

The driver of the vehicle is a 22 year-old son of our community. His name is Lucas White. His parents bought a house from me about 20 years ago. Lucas was just a toddler then. Today, he’s charged with vehicular homicide. But, this story is not about him.


I didn’t know the Calvillos and I didn’t know Lucas either. But, I know a lot of people who know both families. And, this is a tragedy for both, and also a tragedy for the community.

Even though I didn’t know them, I felt it was important to be there, because they were part of our community. And, if you live in our community, it is important for you to know you have our support. That’s the strength of community. Because we all have a bond.

The Fort Atkinson and Jefferson’s baseball teams honored the Calvillos. They both shared in the loss, because Al played for Jefferson for several years, and Bailey played youth sports in Fort Atkinson. Jefferson presented Al’s game jersey to his widow, Wendy, while Fort Atkinson presented Bailey’s little league uniform. It was heart wrenching. But, it was hopeful.

So, today we raised a lot of money for the Calvillo family. But, that’s not what’s important. What is important for them to see is how many people came out for them today, that they live in a community that values and holds them close, that they are not alone.


  1. How very sad and unfortunate yet encouraging to know, people can still genuinely care for one another. No strings attached.

  2. Small town USA is a sober place, and when one of us screws it up, the community binds up the old wounds as best it can. Nice story!