1979 Mr. Volcano Head
The first body I found was in 10th grade. I was in Water Polo as an after school sport, which is ironic since I had to show up by 6:30am to work out.
I had always swam, and thought this was a good way to keep in shape; before I joined water polo I had no idea how good of shape: that was the most difficult sport I've ever done, and I made most improved player my first year. My Dad supported me by saying, "that's just because you sucked so bad to begin with", loving supportive families. Anyways, the point is that I came in before school (0-period) and did workouts, had last period as P.E., and stayed after school to workout, and weekends. I lived at the school it seemed.
The pool was out a ways from the Gym. In California you have outdoor pools; something that would probably perplex many in the mid-west. Not too far from the pool they also had a shed and some handball courts.
One day, I'm going to get ready for water polo, and I see a girl by the courts, staring at the wall. She looked a little freaked, so I called out to her. And she couldn't break eye contact with what she was looking at. Something wasn't right, so I went over there.
Sure enough, some guy had put a revolver under his chin, and made wall art all over the shed. (OK, I don't remember much splatter, just that heads with holes in them look surrealistic).
This girl was freaked and nearly catatonic; I think it was a form of mental shock. She could look at me when I said things to her, but wasn't vocally communicative. I started walking her back towards the gym, and some other people were coming up, interested in what was going on; since I'd called to her, and was now guiding her away and so on. I told someone to call the cops, and someone else to take her to the nurses office (which wasn't yet open), and I basically tried to keep people away from the body.
The whole thing to me, was not that big a deal.
The cops came, and told everyone to get back, taped off the area, and asked a few questions; they didn't take me in or anything. After a few minutes, I went to a shortened practice, and the rest of the day went on like normal. (I don't think the school ever announced what happened, though it was quite the gossip for a few days).
I didn't think it was a big deal; but others really did and were more freaked out about than I was. I was more fascinated with other people's reactions to it; the detached professionalism of the cops, the total lack of understanding or morbid fascination by many of the students, a couple teachers that came on the scene but didn't know how to handle things and tried to get all the students away. And there were a few students who either just sort of mentally locked up or were nearly oblivious except for the crude comments. People react to the same situations quite differently.
Suicide is Painless : 1994 Third Point Systems Jumper • 1997 What is it about my mom? •