Today is the 28th anniversary of my friend June’s death. June was murdered in her home on June 11, 1982, just a year after we graduated from college. Three years ago, I decided to make a digital story about June, not only to mark the 25 years since I lost her, but to celebrate our friendship and the 1970s feminism that brought us together.
I can’t remember those days without imagining June.
You can see the digital story here:
Since the making of this story, June’s case has received new attention and is being reinvestigated by an official cold case unit and a wonderful detective who is determined to see June’s killing solved. The murderer knows that he is again under investigation; he may be laughing now but his time will come. I believe that someone or some evidence will come forward some day to lay this crime to rest.
Making June’s story was painful but necessary because I don’t want to forget her and the movement that shaped our friendship. I loved my life then. I could hardly wait each day to meet my friends at our student group’s office. We argued and laughed and sometimes published our ideas. We organized and marched and wrote letters and showed up when needed to voice our demands. We held garage sales and feminist film festivals to raise money for our efforts. We simultaneously cared so much and so little because our irreverence for the systems of power just pushed us harder to insist on change.
We didn’t yet know how much could be lost.
But at June’s death, we came face to face with the very thing we most wanted to change—the violence in our everyday women’s lives. And 28 years later, I’m still engulfed with rage and pain and sorrow that none of us could save her.