A Week of Tragedy and Grief Cast a Pall over North Texas

There is no precise way to measure grief.

You can’t gauge the intensity of sorrow and loss like the violent winds of a spring tornado.

Since last Saturday — when seven tornadoes touched down in North Texas, claiming at least four lives and injuring dozens of others — a vortex of human violence has torn apart North Texas.

In the span of five days – from Saturday to Wednesday – at least 14 people have died in a string of killings, including the fatal police shooting of a teenager in Balch Springs to a bizarre murder-suicide in East Dallas to a ghastly murder-suicide involving a stalker on a pastoral college campus in Irving.

Nature’s cruelty couldn’t match our inhumanity toward one another – driven by rage, mental instability, terrible choices. Tragedy after tragedy.

Look at them.

Saturday, April 29:

A Balch Springs police officer, Roy Oliver, 37, fires a rifle into a car full of teenagers as it drove away from a party late Saturday night, striking Jordan Edwards, 15, in the head. Edwards, once a standout football player and honor-roll student at Mesquite High School, will be laid to rest today. One dead

Monday, May 1:

In Denton, a man facing a trial on a charge of indecency with a child fatally shot himself outside the Denton County Courts Building. He later was identified as Kevin Conley, 56, of The Colony. One dead.

In East Dallas, Derick Lamont Brown, 36, fatally shot Arthur Doyle Riggins, 66 – and also wounded a neighbor and a Dallas paramedic — before killing himself. Two dead.

In Fort Worth, a woman, Leslie Bailey, 47, died after being shot in a Ridgmar Mall parking lot by her estranged husband, David Bailey, 45, who killed himself later during a police chase. Two dead.