November 27 marked a sad anniversary for Washington Redskins fans. Washington Redskins safety Sean Taylor lost his fight for life that day in 2007, the victim of a gun crime committed in his own home in view of his family.
Redskins Hog Heaven grappled with how to mark the anniversary. We decided it was time to let it go and move on. On of our readers called us to account for that. His inquiry included a personal statement about Mr. Taylor that was better than anything I could have said about the man.
Akhil Gogia is a 20 year old student who grew up in Taylor's Ashburn, Virginia, neighborhood. He graciously agreed to let me publish his recollection of Taylor the neighbor. Here is Akhil's story in full:
"First of I just want to say that I love this site and its the best place to get my skins news but I just have one complaint. I just feel that today something should have been written about Sean Taylor. Maybe I am just late to get over his death but for me it really hit home.
"I live right down the street from where Sean use to live in Ashburn Va. I met Sean Taylor for the first time one Halloween when I was in high school and I went trick or treating at his house. He was just such a humble guy. Me and a few of friends all had redskins jerseys and one of my friends didn't so he ran down the stairs to is Benz and took out his game day jersey and signed and gave it to him. Sean didn't even hesitate to give it to him. He talk to us for a good 30 minutes, signed some stuff and let us take pictures of him. Honestly looking back I think it was really rude of us to make him stand out for so long but he never made us feel like that.
"I also ran into him a few times here and there around Ashburn. The other time that I fondly remember running into him was alongside Loudoun County Parkway. I guess he was running there working out and staying in shape and even in the middle of his workout he stopped and said Hello and talk to me for a few minutes. With all that said I just feel something should have been written about him today, that's all. Thanks for keep the burgundy and gold nation up to date!"
Thank you, Akhil for sharing this new and different insight on the man.
Taylor came to the Redskins with a degree of mistrust of the media. By 2007, he began to open the door to his personality in a few interviews. His statement about football players being paid a king's ransom for a kid's game was artfully spoken and revealed substance we did not see on the field. All that is left are memories of the player, visions of what might have been and recollections of neighbor kids that shares the Taylor most of us never knew.