Adrian Louis Teneese “Scotty” 1963 – 2012
I received word this week that Adrian Teneese passed away. Scotty and I grew up together. We were friends in school, played hockey and other sports. He used to stay over on Halloween so we could go out together. He liked to laugh and when we were young we laughed often. That is what I remember most.
Scotty couldn’t hear so well. I knew he couldn’t hear the teacher, most of the time. He was smart but classrooms and teachers at blackboards are not for everyone. My grandfather was deaf, so I was used to speaking loud. Maybe that’s why we got along in the first place. I don’t know.
I remember in grade six the most popular guy in class decided he was going to fight Scotty. I was on Scotty’s side but I wasn’t going to be much help. The other boy had the rest of the boys in class on his side. I was a little scared, but Scotty wasn’t.
When the fight started. Scotty let the other boy throw the first punch. The popular boys cheered him on.
Scotty hit him a few times. Not hard but quick. It wasn’t long and the boy gave up. His fans were disappointed.
Scotty could have been the new popular boy in grade six, but he didn’t let on, or dominate. Everyone went back to exactly where they belonged. Scotty let that happen.
To this day I don’t understand it. It is a sense of fairness that escapes me. Something I admire in Aboriginal people. To fight to be equal, regardless of past injustice.
Scotty grew up on the reserve. His father, Raymond died of exposure on the hill above the lake behind the arena. His grandfather, Mose was hit by a car on the highway like an animal.
When we were done with school we used to run into each other now and again. Even ten years later we would pick up exactly where we left off. Laughing in spite of it all. Sometimes he was on the mend and sometimes not.
Of course we lost touch. I have no right to be sad. We were only childhood friends. But I am angry now.
Good bye Scotty.