Sunday, May 31, 2009

A tragedy among my staff

I got to the office at 9am on Saturday, and while Aaron and I were updating staff members on a new start time, I answered the telephone as ususal: "Prodigy Staffing, this is Jessica" to a woman who was clearly upset. It was one of our staff members who was scheduled for the day who told us that she and her friend Shateese would not be at work today because Shateese passed away the night prior.

At 30, Shateese died from a terrible car accident caused by a head-on collision with a man running from the police after stealing a car and attempting an armed robbery. Shateese has gone through a culinary school and was seeking full time employment as a chef, looking to become a successful professional.

Although Shateese and I had only a professional relationship, I will miss her being a part of our staff, especially since she has worked with us for more than a year on a regular basis. In fact, when she came to pick up her paycheck last week, I had a last minute order from a client to work at the State Fair, and she took it. Aaron showed up to the event because it was a car race, and Shateese personally prepared his concession food!

How strange it felt to see her name on the schedule and to know that her last paycheck was in route. And how strange it will be to schedule her friends without her. How tragic it was for her life to end so quickly. And how sad that she did not get the opportunity to celebrate her 31st birthday this week with her family.

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