Friday, November 20, 2009


MONTREAL – Montreal police are investigating the city’s 28th homicide of the year after a man was found shot to death at about 8 p.m. Thursday outside an apartment building in the city’s Little Burgundy district.

The man, 21, was found laying dead on the ground, near the corner of Des Seigneurs and St. Jacques Sts., after neighbours called 911 to report gunshots.

Police say the victim was known to them.

His name is Orlando. He died last night, I was told he was shot three times in the head.

I didn't know him enough to tell you if he liked his eggs sunny side up or scrambled, or if he rather drink Pepsi or Coca Cola. I couldn't even tell you if he was a Scorpio or a Libra, if his favorite color was blue or black. I met him when I was sixteen, I was in love with his close friend S.; they looked like brothers, I joked with S. that they probably shared the same father. Both their daddies weren't around much, they were both spawns of the stereotypical inner city household; single mother, a stack of unpaid bills, half sisters and half brothers.

The next time I heard about Orlando was a couple years later. S. and I had broken up but we kept in touch, wavering in and out of each other's lives. S. told me Orlando was back in Juvie, he robbed the same corner store twice, didn't bother putting a mask and ran all the way home(down the street). The Police picked him up a little later. I remember laughing, telling the story to everyone who knew him. I remember thinking how stupid it was, sticking up the same place twice. When the story telling ended, I realized Orlando did it on purpose, he had been in and out of Juvie for some time, I had heard his house wasn't a home. I guess he felt like he belonged there; being locked out was better than being free.

It's funny how I started writing this post, thinking I'd run out of things to say quickly. I didn't know him, he was a stranger, yet I do have some anecdotes...

Orlando was good looking; he looked like a blend of Asian and Black, he had long hair, he was tall. He had a crush on Malaika; when she was going back to Trinidad he told her she could hide out in his closet. He must have been 17 back then, Malaika always said he was a sweet guy, just so damn confused. When I dated R., we bumped into Orlando and his friends at the metro station. R. greeted them, before we continued on our way, Orlando gave me a smile and told R. 'Hold on to her, she's a good girl.' It was genuine and it made R. proud.

Tonight, S. called me with news of Orlando's death. He couldn't believe it, he said he had spoken to Orlando a couple weeks ago. "Did he have any babies?" I asked, although I knew the answer. "Yeah, he's got a baby in the states, and another here. Orlando was good with women, he kept on trading one girl for the next. Who knows how many babies he had?" I paused, bit my lip and got angry for a second. The circle continues, some more fatherless children.
"A lot of people will talk about the bad experiences, but I'm going to remember the good times. Orlando just wanted attention, you know how he was, man, all he ever wanted was some attention..."

Orlando had a lot of faults, his reputation preceded him. But I chose to remember him as the15 year old boy I met, my then lover's body double. Back then, we didn't know who we would become; the future seemed endless. I hope that the After life offers Orlando what this Earth never could.

God of faithfulness, in Your wisdom You have called Your servant Orlando out of this world; release him from the bonds of sin, and welcome him into Your Presence, so the he may enjoy eternal light and peace and be raised up in glory with all Your saints. Amen.


latree said...

i can imagine how he was. i'm sure he's a nice guy. life has made him 'bad'

amen to your prayer.

Natalie said...

Rest in peace, Orlando.

Spurious Philosopher said...

The death of such youngster is always to me the depiction of this imperfect world.

May he rest in peace.

Anonymous said...

R.I.P Orlando, you will never be forgotten.

In the streets, his name was "Malaikai". I'm guessing it's because of the girl he liked? Never told me exactly why he had that nickname..

Orlando is very unique and a one of a kind. ATTENTION is really all he wanted and he always had it. He had a true gift.

I will also never forget the amazing adventures this man has brought me into, it was crazy and amusing. I was living the life of the game 'Grand Theft Auto' but in a good way. :)

Last time I saw him was 2 days before his death.. Went over to say what's up but he was too tired to get up so I left him alone.

And minutes before this incident, he asked for me but I was at work.

ORLANDO - MALAIKAI belongs to GOD he is a true understanding person with a loving heart. May he rest in peace with the angels.

Live forever.

Nana said...

@ Anonymous.
It's mind boggling how life can go sometimes, if he would have chosen to do something else that day, or stay home, he would still be alive.. Do you know when will be his funeral?

Anonymous said...

This is Malaika,

To Orlando I was a huge crush or intimate infactuation, to me he was much more than that he was like a little brother.

Someone I wanted to protect and really assist but never had the means to. He was someone who always brought a smile to my face with his playful ways, his charm and suave words.

I always wondered if I was deserving of such praise ... of such words of such genuine love and attention... it was too much but it was greatly appreciated cuase times were hard ...

Whenever Orlando was around I never wanted to leave his side because I was always afriad for him...

I remember he would always tell me "Malaika if only you would give me a chance, I would become a man".

I always will love him deeply like I love my own brother... My heart is aching in pain for him... I will always remember you, for the kind, loving , caring , considerate, adventurous person you were. I always told you how much I cared , never had the chance to show you ...
Always wanted the chance to show you... Orlando sweetie, I always told you to becareful and wise... Now I am here, my face stained with tears, IN VISIBLE PAIN WANTING TO KNOW WHAT WENT WRONG?

Orlando I don't want to blame you for this but I wish I had one last chance to see you and tell you that your life impacted mines in a big wa... Always been asking for you...Wishing someone would give me the number...

Now you are gone I can't even call you ... I love you, my brother...My love for you goes beyond infactuation or a crush... I will always love you ...

And this is too much for me to bare, sweet wondering butterfly... you will always, always have a home , a real home in my heart...

Love you always
Malaika G.

Anonymous said...

I have heard of many different views of how a good kid could go bad. Some say the home some say the friends you keep but at the end of the day it is the choices that we make as individuals that set us apart from the rest weather it maybe in a good or bad way. I guess what I am trying to say is that individuals like orlando the system that controls us and mould and designs or thinking has failed many and uplifted many but we must always look to eradicate the failures, so to the people of the system who failed orland those misunderstood, him those truly made him into who he was example his Mother are the ones who are respondsible for his low self esteem ulimately his death. To the system I write that the cup of your iniquity is now full now you will see the wrath of ALLAH

Nana said...

@Malaika, thx you for sharing, babe. I like to believe that we are reborn after this life, you know...That whatever mistakes we made here, we are able to make them right, at another time, another space even. I also like to believe that the soul wanders for a certain time before passing to the After life; like that, he/she can see the impact he had on people in this life. Orlando's in a better place, I'm sure, He will be a man, his journey isn't finished.

@ Second Anonymous.
I agree to a certain extent. The final decision is always our own. Our environment and our upbringing contribute immensely to who we become. Our desires, our yearnings and our addictions stem from things/people that we missed out on in our child hood or early teen years. I believe that any young men or young women (black, latina, white, indian etc..) may go through muddy waters, lose side of who they are and what they truly want, then encounter a person, or an event, that brings them unto a journey of discovery. It's so unfortunate that Orlando didn't get that opportunity in this life.