It doesn’t make sense.
When Kevin Lawall jumped from his parent’s second-story bedroom window it didn’t make sense.
“It was just like surreal that I saw him go by the window,” Debbie Lawall, Kevin’s mother, said. “I don’t know what happened. Something snapped because he was just saying he would go for a walk in a happy voice. It doesn’t make sense.”
On Oct. 28, 2010, Kevin committed suicide in his home in Centreville, Va. His family will never have closure — Kevin didn’t leave a note, say goodbye or give a reason. He simply jumped, leaving his family to face the unknown.
Kevin, who attended Virginia Tech for two weeks as a freshman in fall 2010, left school because it was too overwhelming and returned home to live with his parents, Debbie and Thomas Lawall.
He met with a psychologist for six weeks, and Debbie said Kevin seemed to be doing better. But he later went into a downward spiral.
“We are not really sure why,” Debbie said.
Kevin met with a psychiatrist who prescribed him an anti-depressant, which he started taking the day before he committed suicide. Debbie suspects the medicine may have triggered him.
“We won’t ever know if it was feeling (like) he didn’t get better,” she said. “Something in the meds kicked him off.”
Kevin hadn’t slept for two days before he killed himself — he was anxious. His parents considered hospitalizing him, but his psychologist preferred not to admit him into an adult psychiatric ward.
According to Debbie, the psychologist said Kevin assured her he wouldn’t do anything to himself because it would hurt his family too much.
“In retrospect, I wish we would’ve hospitalized him,” Debbie said.
The night before he killed himself, Kevin took a sleep aid medication. Kevin’s parents had him sleep in the room next to them. However, his room was in the basement.
“We thought he slept all night,” Debbie said. “I’m not 100 percent sure because we didn’t sleep in the room with him — I wish I had.”
The next morning, Kevin told his mother the antidepressant didn’t make him feel much better.
After Kevin ate breakfast, he and his mother watched “The Price is Right.” Debbie suggested they go for a walk, since the doctor said he should get fresh air and exercise.
Debbie said Kevin showered and got his shoes. He went downstairs, said he was going to change his clothes and went back upstairs. She was on the computer and said they could leave in a few minutes.
“It was in like three minutes,” Debbie said, “and he went out the window.”
Lounging in a Blacksburg coffee and tea shop on a dark wooden chair, a young woman with blond hair, which was still wet from a shower, and large, round blue eyes, sat calmly with a wide, bright smile strewn across her face.
Dressed in a dark green and navy blue flannel shirt, she blended in with the other patrons in the shop — chatting away. But her topic of conversation would’ve struck the attention of others listening to her words that day.
“The biggest trigger was that medicine would be his fix all,” she said. “It takes a while to work. He took it that Wednesday night, and he killed himself Thursday morning. He felt worse the next day — he thought it was the end of the road for him.”
Jennifer Lawall is Kevin’s older sister. She spoke eloquently about her brother’s suicide — an extremely sensitive topic. Although the details of her brother’s death are chilling, she remained poised.
Interjecting the conversation, Jennifer would suddenly light up — just the sound of her brother’s name made her eyes brighten and smile widen.
The memories she holds of her brother, especially one of her helping Kevin ask a girl to his first prom, obviously evoke strong happiness within her.
Regardless of the happy memories, Jennifer also clearly remembers the months leading to her brother’s death.