a memorial to my childhood friend.
Nicole's senior picture, 1998.
| In 1984, when I was four years old, I
moved to Frankenmuth, Michigan. I didn't know anybody at the time, and I was a bit
nervous. Due to my mom's involvement in Library Friends, a group at the local library, I
met Nicole Veitengruber that summer, before I started kindergarten. Her mom and mine hit
it off and while they were doing their library work, Nicole and I would spend our time in
the cool basement of the library, looking through numerous books and magazines, and having
a great time being kids. We were hell-raisers at times. At one point, when we were in
first or second grade, we found a glass of beer sitting in the parking lot, and decided to
spill it on someone's minivan. Well, we had to spend some time cleaning up that minivan.
It was a funny situation.
We stayed friends and had many more adventures together. In 1993, I moved out of Frankenmuth, to Monroe MI, where I would spend the next several years. Monroe is about 2 hours north of my old home town, so I naturally wasn't able to hang out with Nicole all that often anymore, but we did stay in touch. We talked on the phone fairly frequently, and whenever I came to Frankenmuth, I visited her. In 1998, she came to my graduation party in Monroe and we had a lot of fun and caught up on many things. After that, I didn't see her again until 1999. Nicole had a presentation to give in Monroe, at the community college. I met up with her there, and that night, she, her then-boyfriend, my friend Melissa and I drove to Ann Arbor and had fun there, eating ice cream and doing the usual Ann Arbor thing of walking around, shopping and talking.
I went up north last week, and on my way back down, I stopped and stayed over in Frankenmuth. While there, I stopped at the library and looked through high school yearbooks from my school and saw how old friends looked more recently. While there, I was reminded of my times spent having fun there as a child. After that, I stopped by Nicole's house. I had called earlier and there was no answer, and no one home when I stopped. Not being able to get in contact with her, I drove back to Monroe, figuring that Nicole was off at school.
Today, July 20th, 2001, I received bad news. My dad came over and told me that Nicole was dead. She had been living in an apartment in Detroit at the time, attending Wayne State University, when they found her. I don't know what the cause of death was, nor do I know exactly when she died. Nicole's parents had gotten my messages and called my parents to let them know. When my dad told me, I didn't know how to react. I'd never lost a friend that good before. As I type this, it's about 2 hours after finding out, and I'm still in disbelief. I will be visiting her grave soon.
By putting this memorial page up, I don't want to focus on the end of Nicole's life, but I would rather focus on her life in general, and what a pleasure is was to be friends with her. That's why I picked the fun font for the logo, and the happy ( in my opinion) color, blue, for this layout. I've always thought of that color when I think of Nicole. I also chose to put up happy pictures of Nicole, because I don't have any pictures of Nicole being sad, because I didn't see that side of her very often. I used to think it was an odd or bad thing to put up a memorial webpage for someone, but for some reason, I felt like it should be done. Nicole loved the internet, and I figured it would be appropriate.
I feel bad that we lost touch a bit towards the end, but I'm sure that if I'd gotten that last chance to hang out with her, that it would've been just as fun as the old days
Nicole Veitengruber. 1980 - 2001 Rest in Peace...
articles that Nicole wrote for the Delta Community College newspaper:
© Evan Hayden