So, in the head of Rick O. Smith something gets switched to overload and he kills five people in rural Manchester, IL or maybe six, , because one of the victims, the Mommy, was pregnant. For whatever reason he goes into the house and kills Grandma, Mom & Dad and their 2 sons. He also wounds the daughter a six year old. All in he shoots something like 2% of the population of this small town. Before jumping in his car to catch his appointment with “suicide by police” he gathers up this poor child “the girl who lived”, takes her to a neighbor’s and asks them to get her to the hospital.
I really don’t care what went wrong with Rick- there is no “reason” for doing this. There may be causes that got him to that terrible day, but there is no rational decision tree along which he travelled. I’m sure there are readers who are raising their hands because they know the answer; “Toxic Masculinity”.
If there is such a kernel in Men’s Brains then isn’t it possible that there is a competing pith causing them to do good.
What went through Smith’s mind as he contemplated the horror of his recent actions and reacted by carrying the little girl to safety? How closely related was the wiring that had him do this good deed to the impulses of the West Texas firemen who who donned their turnouts aware that they probably wouldn’t be around for breakfast?
How could the evil and the sublime co-exist in Rick O. Smith during the same heartbeat?
Did the sane thought “This Is What You Need to Do” register as it passed through his frantic mind.
- Rick Smith Photos – Manchester, Illinois Murders – Rick Odell Smith (everyjoe.com)
- Police still piecing together motive murder of Manchester, Ill., family (stltoday.com)
- 2 boys, 3 adults shot to death in Illinois town (newsok.com)