Five years ago this very minute -- at 7:17 p.m. -- the bloody body of your precious son lay face-down in the grass after he was shot and killed in cold blood by a man who saw him and -- with no evidence -- deemed he was "up to no good."
I'm sorry that days later you were forced to review gruesome crime scene photographs to confirm the dead body stored in the morgue and tagged as "John Doe" was actually that of your beloved son.
I'm sorry you had to hear painful details of the bullet shot straight into your son's chest by his killer who, according to the autopsy report, stood just inches away from the boy you loved more than life itself and pulled the trigger.
I'm sorry you didn't get to watch your son, an honor's English student who loved math, walk across the stage and receive his high school diploma.
I'm sorry your chances of sending him off to college were robbed by a man who claimed he was scared of your son who had nothing but teenage innocence, a hooded sweatshirt, a bag of Skittles and brown skin on him.
I'm sorry he'll never get to be a pilot like he excitedly talked about and set goals to achieve.
I'm sorry you'll never know what Trayvon Martin would've accomplished in his 20s.
I'm sorry so much of the world still doesn't understand the magnitude of your loss and what it represents in this country about our dangerous and prejudiced perceptions of Black people.
I'm sorry that not much has changed in these past five years with our deadly policing, racist legislation, violence and continued devaluing of Black bodies.
I'm sorry that even here in Iowa, our Republican-controlled legislature is pushing the same racist "Stand Your Ground" legislation that has unfairly protected and allowed your son's killer to walk freely.
No parent should have to bury their child. No parent should have to go through what you've gone through these past five years.
And I am so, deeply sorry.
To honor Trayvon's memory, I encourage you to learn about him. Order this book written by his parents:
And finally, if you live in Iowa, I encourage you to contact your legislators NOW and urge them to oppose HSB 133 which would allow senseless shootings like this to take place in our state by the passage of "Stand Your Ground" legislation. Click here for more information.
Talk About Trayvon Toolkit
What I Want My Daughters to Know About America
Why Iowa Lawmakers Need to Hear Your Opposition