Alainna-Caitlyn Earl accepting an award from Dr. Jeffrey Gibson | The Odyssey

Alainna-Caitlyn Earl accepting an award from Dr. Jeffrey Gibson | The Odyssey

By Brittany Wilson, The Whetstone

Of all the things Wesley College students, faculty and staff tend to butt heads about, there are three things that we can all undoubtedly agree on:

  1. Alainna-Caitlyn Earl was a beautiful person with a brilliant mind.
  2. She died way too fast and far too young.
  3. She will be very sorely missed.

When I first heard about Alainna’s passing, I refused to believe it.

Just last year we were sitting in class together. Just last semester we were complaining about the same assignments and discussing the same readings.  Just a few months ago everything was okay.

When Alainna graduated in the spring, I knew I would probably never see her again.

I never dreamed it would be so permanent.

There is no decent explanation as to why bad things happen to good people, or how someone so vibrant and full of life one day fails wake up.

But Alainna’s mother, Cheryl Earl, said it best.

“She just wasn’t ours to keep.”

These last few weeks I’ve watched the school pull together in a way I’ve never seen before, all in an effort to celebrate Alainna’s life—both individually, as friends circled together to share stories and grieve together; and also collectively, as the entire student body united to say their final goodbyes.

Over my four years as a student at Wesley, I’ve witnessed a lot of friction between groups on campus, and watched as our population divided from one student body into a countless number of little cliques.

It was such a powerful statement—and a relief—to watch walls come down and attitudes shift as everyone came together to acknowledge the incredible life of one of our own.

I consider myself very lucky to have known Alainna.

I feel even luckier to be part of a community that can so fluidly move to support one another in hard times.