It is now public that I am doing a series for Discovery ID. I have been doing many interview and one of the most frequently asked question is’ Why are you doing this show?” It reminds me of an old Chinese say; “The how is easy but the why is difficult.”
For twenty-five years I have been the coroner for Dauphin County. Over the years I have tried to have a transparent office. I have held many press conferences. I hold them not to promote myself but to inform the community of what the deaths I investigate tell us about how we live and how we should live.
Each death I investigate tells me something about the nature of death. Every day I face the details of how took someone met the dark angel. All the deaths I investigate are sudden, maybe from an unknown cause, an accident, a homicide or even a self-inflicted suicidal action. Most long term illnesses never reach my forensic center because their history of physical demise well documented.
Over the years I started to realize that the I was becoming a spokesman for the dead. Through the pathologies, patterns and the scene investigations they spoke to me of their most intimate details. They reveal their mistakes, their victories and what caught them unaware. I intern have attempted to tell the community the importance of their stories and what we can learn from them. I most cases I have found that when tragedy happens we lose ourselves in the superficial causes and miss the greater philosophical questions. We debate back and forth about gun control but seldom ask the question; “Why does life seem so cheap that one can kill another for so little reason?” We speak of a heroine epidemic but seldom discuss; “Why are the richest, the freest people in the world anesthetizing themselves? These and other greater questions about the meaning of life are not often discussed and that is the real story of death.
Asking these questions goes well beyond the physical cause of death to the very nature of man. It is my hope that this series, “THE CORONER: I SPEAK FOR THE DEAD” will allow a broader and more significant discussion well beyond my own community. Discovery ID has a perfect format to do just this. I will blog about each episode and discuss those greater stories the victims want to tell me and you.
It gives meaning to their loss and the loss of the victim’s families to ask these greater questions and Discovery ID has given me this opportunity. Come with me and listen to what the dead have to say.