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Robert Bryan Memorial

Robert Bryan Memorial

From Cindy Allsbrooks

Mother of David “Gypsy” Chain
June 17th 1974 Sept. 17th, 1998

In April of this year we lost a wonderful young woman, Beth O’Brien, when she fell from a tree in Oregon. I remember getting the phone call and how devastated I felt. On October the 9th, I received yet another phone call from a friend in Austin who sadly gave me the news about Robert Bryan. I immediately thought of Robert’s mother, wishing I could somehow comfort her
from Texas with a spiritual telepathy. Another young person gone, the heart slowly breaks and we can’t seem to find answers to our questions.
One thing I have learned as a mother who buried her only son just four short years ago, is that even a parent who has lost a child does not know any magic words to stop the pain for another parent. My son David died for his cause, and my life changed forever. Like Robert, David was only 24 years old. The questions, the shear loneliness of the grief process, are one’s personal journey and must be walked alone in many ways. I will never forget however, the tremendous amount of love and
support, which came from the environmental community and uplifted me many times when I was down. That is what we must do for one another now.
Like so many of you, I did not know Robert Bryan, but I do know that this young man was on his journey and that journey led him here. Something compelled him to the forest with a desire to do something about the endangered trees. I would that there would be no more tree sits and no more young people dying but I will never condemn their noble cause or the choice they made.
There are so many young people who have made choices to kill and be destructive. Our young activists who are devoted to non-violence and the preservation of the earth are not criminals. I will honor this young man and pray that his family will find the peace and acceptance of his untimely death, somewhere down the road.

(In case anyone reading this does not know, David “Gypsy” Chain was killed by a tree in Humboldt felled by a logger working for Pacific Lumber. David was 24, the same age as Robert Bryan. Though audio recording of the logger threatening forest defenders was captured by David’s friends moments before his tragic death, neither the Humboldt Sheriffs Dept., the D.A.s office nor the California Attorney General ever did a serious investigation. Cindy Allsbrooks filed and won a civil suit against Pacific Lumber [Maxxam, Hurwitz] and won. Sadly, that could not bring her brave, loving son back.)

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