When I was a kid, my friends and I would construct huge, multi-room snowforts along the side of the road next to my house. My father would use his snowblower to make a huge pile, and the plows would add to it.
Once, we made a truly epic fort, one that lasted for days. We could almost stand up in one of the rooms.
We were probably about 10 years old.
It never occurred to any of us that a plow could hit the fort – which looked like nothing but a small round hole from the outside – and trap us inside.
But one day, my mother got a frantic visit from a neighbor. Our snowfort had just collapsed, a victim of melting on a warm day. She was afraid there were kids inside.
I scoffed, as I recall. Of course we weren’t in there; it was too wet to play in the melting snow.
But now, as I read the tragic details of Tyler and Joshua’s snowfort, I realize she was right to worry.
As children, we are blessed with a sense of adventure unburdened by fear. As an adult, it’s hard to keep in mind that this was a freak accident. The loss of even one child makes all childhood adventures seem too dangerous to even contemplate.