A wound time can’t heal

SKS Editors

When Adrian Barker was sentenced for the murder and felonious assault of Christopher Kernich, a 23-year-old Kent State student on May 26, he said he would think of his actions every day of his life.

Kernich’s family won’t be able to forget what Barker did.

Yesterday, Ronald Kelly, the other man convicted in Kernich’s murder, was also sentenced to 15 years to life imprisonment.

Kelly will likely be unable to forget either.

There are no excuses for his actions.

Kelly’s mother was murdered when he was four years old. Yesterday, he wrote his own chapter on what it is like to go round in a vicious circle of events when he turned from being a victim of tragedy to the perpetrator of it.

He expressed remorse for the Kernich family’s loss, but reiterated his innocence in what happened.

Snapshots, possibilities and memories are all that are left for Kernich’s family. They will never see their son again.

Will this sentencing provide them with closure? No it won’t.

In fact, this murder opens the floodgates for all of us here on campus. When Kernich’s mom heard about the incident involving her son, she was in Iraq.

Incidents like this bring fear where there was none. No amount of cold dishes of justice and revenge bring innocence back.

“Parental grief is boundless,” Kernich’s father, John, said yesterday. “It touches every aspect of a parent’s being. When a child dies, parents grieve for the rest of their lives.”

Our campus has seen tragedy before. This sentencing closes last year’s chapter at Kent State, which saw this university begin its centennial celebrations, marked the 40th year of the May 4th tragedy, and the death of two students on campus: John White and Christopher Kernich.

Kent State will not forget Kernich. A promising athlete and business major, Kernich had his life cut short.

Neither will we forget John White, a graduate student and Iraq War veteran.

A smart and funny man, White had already earned his master’s degree in Library Science and was finishing his second master’s in Instructional Technologies. Who knows what accomplishments he could have made had he not met a tragic end.

But despite the sadness and loss, we must look to the future. We celebrate life, not death.

At the Summer Kent Stater, we want to express our sympathies to the Kernich and White families.

Note: Editor Jenna Staul abstained from contributing to this editorial as she provided coverage on the Kelly sentencing.