I don’t know what it is, but of all the horrible news stories out there, those about parents leaving their children in hot cars make me angriest. I’m sorry, but it’s just not something I understand.
That I don’t understand it doesn’t mean it’s not understandable. For instance, a colleague of mine from the political world recently shared with me a story about a near-tragedy her family experienced. I sympathize, I really do.
But that doesn’t mean I won’t be fish-shaking angry every time I read about a careless, reportedly distracted parent leaving their child in a vehicle. In the summer. With the windows up.
My blood boils even as I write this.
How can it not after reading about a woman accused of leaving her 5-year-old daughter inside a car outside a Jacksonville Costco store?
The Jacksonville Times-Union reports someone saw the child on Sunday afternoon and removed her from the hot vehicle. Police were called after an unsuccessful search for the mother.
Police say Vivian Guo returned some 45 minutes later and told police she’d lost track of time because her watch wasn’t working.
A child nearly died because a wristwatch wasn’t working.
I just don’t know how situations like that happen. As parents of a toddler, my wife and I do not go more than two minutes without asking each other, “Where’s Ella?” And that’s when we know she is in her playroom. I can’t imagine going 45 minutes before wondering, “Where the hell is my kid?”
And I don’t need my watch to work to remember that I have a child!
Remembering that she had a four-month-old infant was too much to ask of Natasha Graver, a St. Petersburg woman who, over the weekend, left her child in a hot minivan twice in one day, reports the Tampa Bay Times.
On Saturday afternoon, police said Graver, 32, decided to attend the funeral for the three women at Friendship Missionary Baptist Church on 31st Street S in St. Petersburg. Police said she strapped her 4-month-old daughter into a car seat in her minivan and went to the church.
Graver told police that when she arrived at the service at about 1 p.m., she forgot about her daughter and left her inside the van with the windows rolled up.
How do you forget about your daughter? That’s like forgetting that your left or right arms
Again, I am sorry if I offend anyone by writing this, but I don’t believe you “forget” your child. Perhaps in one percent of cases that is the truth. And other times, children wander into cars and find themselves trapped, like the 3-year-old South Carolina boy who died on Monday after several days after being locked in a hot car for a time.
But, for the overwhelming most part, lazy, horrible parents (who probably have no business being parents in the first place) think they can get away with leaving their child “just this one time.”
As we are reading far too often, just one time is one time too many. Sweet, helpless children are dying.
And I’m angry about it.