I was on the UIC school campus sitting on my computer and waiting for the class before mine to leave the room so I could prepare myself to sleep through another day of Anthropology when I found out something was wrong. It was through a fucking vague, cryptic Facebook post of all things. I remember immediately calling Bobby Nelson and Dylan Piskula to find out what was going on. I heard from them both that Rich Sheppard was dead. He had died the night before. I wept from corner to corner of the campus not knowing what to do until I finally decided I needed to go home. Dancing queen was playing on the train. I fucking hate that song now.

His death was ruled a suicide by police that day. It was my dad’s birthday and I forgot to call him.

I spent so much time refusing to believe that this was a suicide. I refused to even entertain the idea that someone who seemed so happy, and was such a beacon of light in my, and so many other people’s lives could be battling those types of thoughts. This is really my first time writing about it, because I know now that without a dialogue it is impossible to progress.


I wrote this song for him the day after I found out he died.

I miss Rich. He was always doing some ridiculous shit. Whatever he thought/wanted to do is pretty much what he did. He came with me on my first tour ever where he chain smoked, drove us around being a goofball and was just really fantastic to be with. I don’t want to lose another friend. I don’t want anyone to lose a friend this way. All I can say is listen to your loved ones. Show them you care. Talk to them about everything: your fears, your pain, your anger, your passions, your dreams… and be open to listening. Be inviting. Rich was a great friend to so many people and I hope to think that if he heard this song he would be happy. <3

Suicide Prevention Information:


If I could turn around
and see that Uni-brow
I’d buy you some tweezers and we would
Watch Zombie Holocaust
Until the time was lost
But now I’ll wait
To See Your Face Again

If you could just see
All your friends in Lansing
You’d notice one thing
We love you.

I’ll see You in California
We love you, and we miss you, and we care
(Everyday is not the same knowing that you’re gone)

I know that I’ll see you again

Each Day that passes, I will remember you.


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