My Neighbor - Jason Dotson



 Yesterday I learned that my neighbor of six years, Jason Dotson, murdered his wife, Tracie, and then committed suicide after a heated argument. Jason and Tracie had moved away about nine months ago and we lost touch. My wife learned about this event when watching the morning news. We are both in complete shock.  

Jason was an extremely gifted individual both intellectually and athletically. They were both great neighbors, we watched each others' kids, bowled together, played on the same basketball league, watched the Nuggets and often had small chats together when in the yard. On occasion he would ask me for tax advice and in turn I relied on Jason for legal advice. We were sad to see them move.

One time I noticed red rocks in my backyard. The rocks were from Jason's yard. I assumed that Jason's kids had been throwing rocks at my dog. This was unusual as his kids were very well behaved. As a result, I felt quite comfortable approaching Jason to ask him to talk to his kids. At first the kids denied ever throwing rocks, which seemed a little silly because the rocks were unique to their yard. Later, I heard a knock at my door. I opened the door to see Jason and a timid little girl and boy. Jason said, “Go ahead”. The little girl slowly and painfully said, “I'm sorry for throwing rocks at your dog”. I assured her that it was ok and thanked her for having the courage to apologize. Jason was pleased that his kids had done the right thing.  

Another time Jason came to my house and told me about an interesting sequence of events. His dog became sick, he mysteriously lost a key that mysteriously reappeared, and a few other things happened that he thought had meaning. At the same time his wife was pregnant and he was worried that perhaps something was wrong. He specifically said, “Mike, you're a religious person, what do you think this means?” This question opened the door for me to share parts of the great controversy. How man fell to sin in the Garden of Eden and how Jesus came to die for our sins so that we can have eternal life. I shared that we are continually trying to find happiness and it can only be found through a relationship with Jesus Christ. Shortly after they started periodically attending a local church.

These are just a few examples of two neighbors facing every day challenges. In truth, we couldn't have asked for better neighbors.  

In summary, like everyone else, this tragedy completely stunned me and my family. It hurts to even look at the house where they once lived. We all lose our tempers and say and do things that we regret. Unfortunately, the Jason and Tracie accident had a permanent consequence. There are so many times I wish I could have changed a decision made - through life you learn that you don't always get a "do over". Fortunately, Jesus Christ is there to forgive and take us back. Please take a moment to get acquainted with Jesus. Jesus desparately desires to spend time with you and to help you through this world of pain and hurt.