Father & Son From Texas Were Killed in Nice & We Can't Imagine That Mom's Pain

At this point, all the hate-fueled attacks have killed hundreds, destroyed cities, and terrified us all. You'd think it'd be enough. But it's not, and we're starting to doubt it will ever be. This time, we have to read the absolutely horrific news coming out of Nice, and it feels just as heartbreaking and terrifying as it did after Orlando and Instanbul and San Bernadino and Paris -- especially since two Americans, a father and son from Texas, were among the victims.

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In total, officials estimate that at least 84 people have been killed, including 10 children. At least 188 more are injured, and 48 of those are in intensive care and "between life and death," according to French president François Hollande.

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The two Americans were Sean Copeland, 51, and his son, Brodie, 11. According to Sean's daughter's friend, Jess Davis, they were there on vacation with their family. They were from Lakeway, Texas, which is just outside Austin, and by all accounts they were a wonderful, loving family. They didn't deserve this fate. Nobody deserves this fate. 

Brodie was a member of a local baseball team, which posted this on its Facebook page:

The team also set up a GoFundMe, which will donate funds to the Copeland family: Sean's wife, Kim; son, Austin; and daughter, Maegan. We can't even imagine the heartbreak they must be feeling right now -- it's impossible enough to lose a spouse and the father of your kids, but an 11-year-old son, too? 

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July 14 is Bastille Day in France, and 30,000 people gathered on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice for annual fireworks. The victims were killed by a man in a white truck who drove more than a mile through the crowd. According to local media (though not confirmed by police), the driver was 31-year-old Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel.

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His neighbors described him as a loner, but he wasn't on a radicalized watch list and he had no clear ties to any group. So we don't know yet if this was a terrorist attack. His actions suggest it might have been, but we won't know for sure until someone claims responsibility for the deaths.

But it almost doesn't matter -- it should never have happened anyway. Our hearts go out to everyone who lost someone, and we have the survivors in the hospital in our thoughts.

 

Image via Kim Ressmann Copeland/Facebook; design via Anne Meadows

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