|Photo credit: Urban Shotz Photography.|
THE DAY AFTER Christmas. "Kilburn murder victim identified as Shaun Akanbi," the Boxing Day headline read.
Below the headline, a picture of a boy I briefly dated, several years ago. "A post-mortem examination gave the cause of death as multiple stab wounds to the torso."
I hadn't seen Shaun in years, but we were once close. We were never the love of each other's lives, but for a brief moment in time, we belonged to each other.
Even after we went our separate ways (amicably. No drama. It just fizzled out), I was aware of him, peripherally, out there in the world. He was studying law when I knew him, but he went on to found Billy Boyce fashion, whose clothes media outlets have been at pains to point out have been worn by various celebrities (hijacking a story about a boy who's been killed. Their names overshadowing his). But Shaun was a success, doing what he loved.
|Shaun back in the day.|
No one seems to know yet what happened to him this Christmas. Will knowing the how, the why, make it any easier? No. But it's hell not knowing.
I remember the last night I spent with Shaun, all those years ago. We walked around Shepherd's Bush market looking for a tracksuit for him. Shaun was a tiny little guy, and couldn't find anything to fit. We went into a shop selling kid's clothes, underneath the railway arches, where he found something that fitted him. A tracksuit for a child. It seemed so funny at the time.
I'll always remember that day.