In 2007, on June 21, a great tragedy happened in the NYC area. And now, every year on that day – a digital moment of silence is taken as bloggers and social media users across the world collectively remember and reflect.
Many of you know that I’m pals with “Avitable” – Adam Avitable is a real life childhood friend and Internet celebrity. He’s been blogging forever (literally).
And it is through his connections and compassion that I’ve been looped into this day of remembrance. In 2007 Adam blogged about the event; now, for this year’s memorial – Adam created a Facebook Group, “Remembering Puppy Montster” and in the about section he explains:
On June 21, 2007, Dave Konig, affectionately known as New York City’s Watchdog (NYCWD) lost his son, DJ, in a tragic drowning accident at a public pool. Known as the Puppy Monster, DJ had warmed the hearts of thousands of viewers of Dave’s well-known “Cereal Wednesday” Youtube series.
In 2007, we raised money to support Dave during that difficult period, and every year since, we have commemorated his loss by showing that we still remember his little Puppy Monster. Starting on blogs, and moving to Facebook in the last year, this community is something that anyone can participate in. It’s about a moment of silence, a moment of remembrance, and a show of love and support.
Thursday, June 21st, 2012 is your chance to join in and show your love for a life lost too young. Please share any or all of the graphics in the photos section and encourage your friends to do the same!
If you blog, please post a graphic on your site. You can also get more information at the link: http://www.avitable.com/2007/06/22/for-dawg/.
Thank you in advance for showing how much you care.
This is my moment of silence.
I ask that you join me in whatever you way you feel comfortable, be it prayer, meditation, or just taking the time to read this post.
Go over and visit the Fb page or Avitable’s blog for today to link up with other’s commemorating the loss of Puppy Monster, DJ, and showing our ongoing support to his father, Dave.
To Dave (aka: NYCWD): Please accept my personal condolences. I know that as five years have passed, you must feel sadness and pain every single day. And while the world seems to go on, your loss and the life of your son is not one that will ever be forgotten. To remember Puppy Monster – you can go to Dave’s old blog (still on Hiatus); here’s Dave’s blog now, today he has a five year post as well.
To Adam and all the other loved one, who still grieve this tragedy: You have the on-going support of Happy Hippie Rose, for sure. (((BIG FAT INTERNET HUGS)))
Drowning advocacy is an issue that lies close to my heart: my background in water safety as an ocean lifeguard has exposed me to the horrors of drowning; my experiences as a swimmer has burned into me a fierce respect for the power of water.
Water of any kinds can be dangerous for swimmers of all levels – there are some basic precautions that we all can take to help prevent tragedies like this from ever occuring:
- Learn how to swim.
- Always supervise children around water. NEVER leave a child unsupervised near water. NEVER EVER.
- Never swim or play near water (especially open water) alone.
- Only swim in designated areas.
- Wear a lifejacket; do not rely on toys as floatation devices
- NEVER underestimate the strength of the ocean, the depth of a lake; no head-first diving into open water.
- Do NOT overestimate your own ability to cope in various situation.
- Especially if you are an inexperienced swimmer – always remain on the side of precaution.
Drowning is the number one cause of death for children in the state of Florida, where I’m from – where Avitable lives now. And sadly, so many of these tragic accidents are prevantible through increased education, preparation, and awareness.
Other Sources for Water Safety Info:
The USLA (United States Lifesaving Association, the governing body of lifeguard agencies countrywide) is an incredible resource:
- Their Resource page is chock full of materials.
- Stats page is a huge eye-opener for those of you not in the know of such things
- Top Ten Safety Tips
- National Beach Safety Week
If you or someone you know needs help finding a qualified swim teacher in your area, please contact me and I’ll help you out. If you live in the Greater DC Area – Michaela at Metropolitan Swim is THE BEST you’ll find. If you live near Buffalo, NY – please ask me, I’ll be giving free lessons this summer in the Silver Lake area and would love to help you and/or your children learn more about water safety and swimming.
Looks like I was pretty on-point with my own tips. I guess 10+ years of lifeguarding experience does mean something after all! Here are the USLA’s top ten tips:
USLA’s Top Ten (Safety) Tips
- Swim Near A Lifeguard
- Learn To Swim
- Never Swim Alone
- Don’t Fight The Current
- Swim Sober
- Leash Your Board
- Don’t Float Where You Can’t Swim
- Life Jackets = Boating Safety
- Don’t Dive Headfirst, Protect Your Neck
- At Home, You’re The Lifeguard
As always – thanks for reading. And thanks for taking today’s post seriously, it means a lot to me. Love y’all – xoxo, hhr