Thursday, June 8, 2023

Hughes: The Hidden Beauty in Oxford’s Tragedy

Photo from / Representative Jay Hughes
Photo from / Representative Jay Hughes

It is so sad if you knew someone, or were connected somehow to the tragedy last Sunday that makes Oxford Mourn.

The reality is that it is okay and normal to feel the heavy weight of a tragedy, regardless of when, where or how.

The beauty is what comes from that tragedy. That beauty is that we came together as a community, without regard to religion, race, age or economic standing. That beauty is that we now say hello to a stranger we see daily; that we now hug a child that went too long without one; that we now pause to look at a flower or a tree that has been there forever; that we now tell a friend we love them and think of them – though unspoken far too long.

It is the hugs we give, the glances at a brisk pace, the gentle nods, winks or heartfelt smiles we exchange, the realities we accept that what is important in life is so fragile, but a simple nanosecond on the timeline of moments.

The memories and feelings that are left behind are gifts. Truly.

Lives, lessons, thoughts and memories are only in vain if we do not continue to share them and allow them to guide us and live in our souls as we encounter others.

Oxford Mourns – but it has been blessed by the impactful footsteps and heartbeat they shared with us for too brief a period of time. We must and will be stronger for those they left behind in need of love, nourishment, protection and growth.

May the same be true for each of you, your families and your communities with each day and each person you have the privilege to know.

Oxford lawyer Jay Hughes serves the 12th District in the Mississippi House of Representatives. He can be contacted at

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