Sunday, November 30, 2014

My Open Letter To The CATA Cougars And The Family Of Jake O'Neill

Dear CATA Cougars,

I would like to take a few moments of your time this evening and tell you what is on my heart. I didn't know Jake, but for the past few days I have seen pictures, statuses, and tweets that make me wish that I did as each of them gave a glimpse of what a kind and caring person he truly was. Tomorrow the halls of CATA will be hushed, and it is the worst feeling in the world to come to school knowing one less of your classmates isn't there. The CATA class of 2013 knows this all too well, I don't think it truly hit me until we walked across that graduation stage and Adam Chambers did not walk across it with us. 

My heart aches with the feeling that I felt that morning, when we all slowly learned of what happened to Adam. Just know I am praying for each and every one of you, his classmates, his family, and his girlfriend. We all don't want to see those that are young leave us too early, yet who are we to doubt God's plan? I know that in this mourning lies a greater purpose only God would know. One think that I always loved about CATA was the amount of respect most of us had for one another, as I saw the days after the passing of Adam and our Senior class. So I ask of each and every one of you that are in the current Senior class, get as close to one another as you can and support one another as much as possible. You all came in as freshman from other schools, but now you are united and you are Cougars and that is what makes you family.

Although Jake is no longer here on earth, he lives in the heart, mind, and memories of you his friends and family, I have no doubt in my mind that he loved each and every one of you very much. We must not let this be in vain, however. Things need to change, and all of you need to lead the charge to make these changes happen. Please don't be afraid to talk to anyone about any problems or feelings that you may be experiencing, I know that after this there will be no shortage of people that will be willing to listen. Feel free to click here if you or someone you know are struggling with suicide. Jake's memory can help spread awareness for mental illness for people all across this great state, and nation. I have seen over the past few days where i was mentioned that Jake would want all of you to be strong, and with that we must also rise from these ashes and change what needs to be changed, so that this is prevented from happening again.

Rest in peace Jake O'Neill, you will be sadly missed by many, a short life that had an impact on so many others. I will be praying for your family, friends, and your Cougar family. You are gone but you most certainly won't be forgotten.


Dustin Kiggins CATA Class of '13

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


Last night I sat with widened eyes as I saw the barbaric, and violent actions that flooded the many major news outlets around the country who had their eyes on Ferguson Missouri.  I am sure that Michael Brown was a good kid, however this isn't about race but about a man who made a bad choice and is now dead as a result of his actions. I am almost certain that if Michael Brown had not went into a convenience store, stole merchandise from it and then proceeded to threaten the proprietors of that store then he would be alive and well today. The media has fanned the flames of this incident and has had a hand in causing all of this uneeded violence that we saw yesterday evening plastered all over our TVs and on social media.

Kids Are Dying Daily

The thing that makes me upset the most is the fact that people are quick to point out that white cops are constantly gunning down innocent black men. Racism still exists in America today, and if you think that the only ones that are the racists today you are blind. In our nation today the sad truth is that 93% of blacks killed daily in America, are killed by other blacks, the same goes for whites at 83% to the Justice Department. Where is Al Sharpton in the midst of all the violence on the streets of Chicago? The media? Barack Obama? They are silent as innocent lives are lost, yet Michael Browns life seems to be of more importance than all the others. At the same time police brutality is a major problem in our nation, and that also cannot be denied nor forgotten. They claim they are for black America, yet they are silent about black on black crime. This saddens me, simply for the fact in order to stop violence you must first stop your own people from conflicting it on each other. The problem isn't the color of our skin, but it is our actions and Michael Brown made the wrong choice and it cost him his life. He went from being innocent to criminal when he decided to steal things and threaten those who owned the store in which he stole from. Furthermore, he tried to take the gun of an officer who was fearing for his life and he made a split second decision to save his own life. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

Twenty One Years of Blessings

Today I turned twenty one, it is one of few birthdays that are considered by many to be a milestone birthday simply for the fact that you are able to drink legally. However, every birthday should be considered a milestone simply for the fact that each and everyday dawns with the fact that the next one isn't promised to anyone no matter your age or the state of health that you find yourself in. I want to use my birthday as an opportunity to glorify God, because He is the only reason I am alive today, and He should have all of the glory.

Twenty one is a long life

We often consider a long life to be about seventy years or more, but how much time is there really in twenty one years? I have been alive for 21 years, 252 months, 1,095 weeks, 7,665 days, 184,065 hours, and 11,044,929 minutes. This time that I have broken down are all blessings form the Lord, and let me tell you why. Every second of everyday, the time that has encompassed these twenty one years that I have lived I have been blessed with air to take in, and to push back out again. I have eyes that can see, legs that can stand, and feet that continue to walk me step by step. My heart is beating because I can feel it in my chest. Not a day has gone by where the Lord hasn't blessed me with the blessing of life, of health, and the ability to function each and everyday. I didn't make it twenty one years, rather the Lord has chosen to grant me twenty one years of life that I do not regret living. I know that each and every trial I have been through, all of the sins that I have committed, and every time that the holy spirit has moved through me has fit into the Lords plan for me one way or another. If I die tomorrow I would regret very little, and I do believe I lived a long and happy life.

God Can Do The Impossible

I do believe that if you asked my parents what the hardest time of their life was, I think today would be the beginning of that time. For three months they came everyday to the NICU to see their son, and I would imagine each day they came and I was alive, gave them a sigh of relief that is beyond the comprehension of the human brain. There is no question, that I would not be the man I am today without the Lord putting them in my life, and for that I am truly thankful. I know you will both be reading this, and I love you with all of my heart no matter what. God has used them to mold me and shape me into the servant he wants in me and I only hope to live up to the Lords expectations. Mom and dad, if the thought has ever crossed your mind of "Did we do a good job?" or "Where we good parents?"  I must tell you that you have gone above and beyond the title of what good parents are, and I hope you see that in me. In turn  I hope that you can say the of me that I am a good son. The Lord brought me from a measly one and a half pounds to a normal healthy average twenty one year old, I have come far, probably further than those in the medical field may have predicted. This is what makes our Lord so amazing, it isn't what we will but what God wills. If you wish to read my testimony click this link.

Thank You All

I was humbled today to see so many people wish me a happy birthday, some through Facebook while others called or sent me a text. I have always tried to be the nicest person that I can be, I am human and that in no way justifies any of my negative actions. Over the years I have heard people say "I am a good person." but I cannot say that of myself, because to say such things would imply that I think I am when in reality I know I am not. I am thankful to have some great friends and acquaintances to spend my days talking and interacting with. I am grateful to have met and talked to each and every one of you, thank you for taking the time today to wish me a happy birthday, it means more to me than you will ever know, or fathom. Glory to God, for the days I have lived are a blessing, my family I have are a blessing, the friends I have made are a blessing.

I hope each and every one of you have a very blessed day, thank you for making my birthday a special one, and may God Bless you all.

-The Christian