A minor tragedy has struck my family. My cousin, Wesley Stone, has fallen off a balcony and broken his back. Here are the details that I know:

Wes was at a wedding in St. John (Virgin Islands?). During a party at a hotel someone decided to play a joke on all the people out on the balcony smoking and lock the door. So Wes, in a "I'll show them" kind of move decided to climb on to the balcony next door and go through the room and back into the hotel room where the party was going on. As he climbed the trellis either something broke or he lost his grip and he fell twenty feet. He was careflighted back to Austin and landed just today.

Even though we're only cousins we actually grew up quite close. Without taking a long time to explain the fragmented dynamics of my family I'll just say I'm as close to him as I am with my brothers (actually more in some cases.) I spent most of my childhood wearing his hand-me-down clothes. We had slumber parties, we played football and most importantly we got into lots of trouble. Him and my other cousin Todd were like my older brothers and gracious enough include me in their goings on. Of course as we got older and became adults our relationships changed and we started to only see each other a few times a year. Until lately. Wes was always very into film and filmmaking, he lived out in L.A. for quite some time and did pretty well for himself before moving back to Austin to go back to school. Since Deadroom has taken off he's been amazingly supportive, calling me and emailing me. He was there for the SXSW premier with a group of people that he brought to show off his little cousin. He even drove down to Fort Worth once just to bring his girlfriend to eat at Spiral. He really is one of those "guys". You know the type. Beer drinking, weed smoking, fun having, joke telling, wild and crazy and full of life kind of guys: the free-wheeling not giving a fuck kind of lady's man. Now that's all gonna change.

He broke his spinal cord between L1 and L2. At the best he will be paralyzed from the waist down.

I just find myself saying over and over: It happened to the wrong guy. He's definitely a strong willed man with a great outlook on life but as Todd said in an email to me "So overwhelming. So much is over. So much unknown. Would be so difficult not to sink into depression."


Laura | 3:39 PM

So sorry to hear that James. I'll keep you and your family in my thoughts...

dvd | 2:57 AM

We should put something together for him...a brief diversion...maybe a collection of DVDs.

I feel like I shouldn't climb on balconies anymore.

Bryan P | 11:45 AM

James, I'm really sorry to hear about this. It's just terrible.