Troy Workplace Shooting Follow-up

Authorities say Anthony LaCalamita III, the 38-year old man accused of returning to the building of his former job and shooting three people, killing one, may have planned a targeted attack. Police gathered evidence from the dumpster outside LaCalamita’s home, linking him to the shooting in Troy.

When writing yesterday’s post I made mention of how I had recently declined a prospective job opportunity at the firm where the shooting took place, but I was too shaken up to write anything in detail. As a result, I’ve received some worried email messages from friends wanting an explanation.

Now that my nerves have settled, I will elaborate.

I recently left a job doing computer support in New Jersey. I now live in Michigan. The reason I decided to move here was so that I could be with the love of my life.

Cassie and I have been anxious to be together since we began dating in February 2006. After suffering through a long distance relationship tattered with a few short visits to one another’s states for ten months, we realized that if we truly wanted to be together it necessitated some significant life alterations — not to mention some serious commitment.

I managed to gather courage in the face of uncertainty, but as I made preparations to leave home, I ran into some expected obstacles: my parents. They were both reluctant to accept my decision to move without first finding a job with benefits.

All attempts to convince my parents that I would be able to stay afloat without securing a job first failed. My parents, under the belief that they could help me by eliminating risk in my life, repeatedly attempted to dissuade me from following through with my decision to leave.

It was at this point that I tried leveling with my parents. In addition to my desire to move away to be with Cassie, I also had an underlying desire that had grown so loud in the four years since graduating that it could no longer be ignored: I wanted to quit working in computer support — permanently.

I believed that moving away to start a new life with Cassie would be a great opportunity to try and reinvent myself. When I explained that I wanted to explore my passion for writing and that I had a developing idea for a website, my parents laughed at me.

It was then that I understood my parents looked at me and only saw one thing: “computer geek.” Confident in my own talents, I left home without their blessing.

In an interesting twist of fate, a position as a computer support technician surfaced shortly after completing my move. I knew very little about the position at the time, but Cassie’s stepmother encouraged me to come into her office and bring my resume — a “hot job opportunity” was developing at her accounting firm, she claimed.

When I met with Cassie’s stepmother, she introduced me to a woman interviewer who explained that they were unhappy with their in-house technician. After being made aware of my background in professional computer support, she gave the impression that I was a shoo-in for a replacement, and if I was interested in the job it could be mine.

It was a difficult decision to make. Pros included an admirable salary, benefits that could win back my parents’ approval, and I could take comfort knowing I didn’t need to search for another job. All of these pros combined, however, did not overpower the single con that was making me feel sick to my stomach:

Settling for another computer support job would mean I was continuing in the tradition of distracting myself at a “good enough for now” job.

I thanked the interviewer for her time and generosity, but I declined. Accepting the job would simply not be in sync with my dream to become a writer. I left the Gordon Advisors Accounting Firm happy with my decision, concluding that my time and energy would be better spent making my website idea a reality.

A little more than a month later, LaCalamita made national news when he shot three people in the same Gordon Advisors Accounting Firm.

When I heard about the news broadcast, my thoughts were initially bombarded with a series of morbid alternate outcomes that could have resulted if I had shown more interest in the position. My concern then shifted to Cassie, who was naturally concerned about her stepmother’s safety. Thankfully, she was not among the victims.

Sadly, I cannot try to pretend that this story ends happily — because although neither Cassie’s fears or my own fears were manifested, there was a victim who died.

Madeline Kafoury, the retired woman receptionist who returned this year to assist during tax season, was pronounced dead at Beaumount Hospital after the shooting.

My most sincere condolences to her family, coworkers, and loved ones.

Official News Coverage:

  1. Shocking Details Revealed In Shooting Suspect’s History
  2. Office workers mourn friend
  3. Police: ‘Purpose’ behind office shooting
  4. Suspect in workplace shooting to be arraigned Wednesday
  5. Police say 2 victims targeted in office shooting
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5 Responses to “Troy Workplace Shooting Follow-up”

#1 Sean on 10, Apr, 2007 at 10:16 pm

It’s never easy to strike out on your own, but I have a lot of respect for anybody willing to take the risks you have. Good luck.

#2 Helen on 11, Apr, 2007 at 12:20 am

I feel so badly for her family. That’s so horrible.

On another note, Shaun, you aren’t reinventing yourself. You’re becoming yourself. Finally.

#3 Mike on 11, Apr, 2007 at 11:11 am

You gotta be who you are, and you gotta do what you love.

#4 Danielle on 12, Apr, 2007 at 9:47 pm

I have to say I have a lot of admiration for what you are doing! It takes a lot of courage and a lot of faith to break away from what people expect of you. I did that many years ago as a young woman and never regretted it.

I’m eagerly looking forward to seeing what you will come up with!

By the way, I found you through storygirl at writing up.

#5 Joe Bongiovanni on 15, Apr, 2007 at 6:32 pm

I know you probably don’t care what I think, but I wanted to say that I have a lot of respect for what you’re doing with your life. I really admire you.

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