After the mass shooting in Orlando last weekend, there was plenty of attention showered on the shooter — who he was, where he came from, and why he did what he did. This has become standard practice for the media after mass shootings. But fixating too much on the perpetrator can inadvertently overshadow the human face of the tragedy. In an attempt to rectify that, let’s talk about one of the victims of the Orlando shooting. Who was Tevin Eugene Crosby?
An entrepreneur and business owner, 25-year-old Crosby was from Statesville, North Carolina, and those who knew him say he was hard-working, aspirational, and full of positive energy. He played basketball and studied nursing fundamentals at West Iredell High School. When he graduated in 2010, the school’s staff voted him an “unsung hero” of the student body. “They may not be the strongest academically, but they’re the ones who show integrity and determination,” Jacqueline Scott, Crosby’s former English teacher, told The Charlotte Observer. “They persevere.”
Crosby went to Strayer University South in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he studied business administration. Later, he moved to Michigan and owned a marketing firm called Total Entrepreneurs Concepts. The aspiring businessman was known for posting inspirational quotes on Facebook — “Rise up, start fresh, see the bright opportunity in each new day,” read one — and according to Scott, he had a sunny and warm personality.
“I remember his smile, his love of life,” Scott said. “I want people to know the laughter and the joy he spread.”
Crosby’s drive and motivation left an impression on his younger brother Chavis, who’s also studying business and told The Orlando Sentinel that he’s “following in the same footsteps” as his brother. Chavis said that his brother loved to travel for business and pleasure. “He was definitely a good person to me and a good brother to me,” he recalled.
Friends and family members of Crosby are surely experiencing unspeakable amounts of grief right now. While no words can possibly ease that grief, it does seem that Crosby, in his 25 years, made every attempt to grab life by the reigns, reach for his dreams, and be the best human being he could. His senior quote was: “I live my life to the fullest each day and force myself to accomplish my goals.” Although Crosby’s life was brutally and unfairly cut short, he most certainly lived to the fullest and worked tirelessly to achieve his goals. By that metric, his life was a smashing success.