Teens Broke Into Home of the Wrong Former Patriot
This Labor Day weekend, hundreds of students attended a party at the home of former New England Patriots lineman Brian Holloway in Stephentown, New York, near the Massachusetts border. While he was away, they broke in, drank, spray-painted walls, peed on floors, and damaged property. One attendee even stole the headstone that marks the grave of his grandson, who died at birth.
Rather than simply work with police to find those responsible (though he is doing that) Holloway set up a website. On it, he posted the tweets and photos sent from the party without blurring out faces or redacting names. He found a lot of evidence, teenagers these days being too dumb to consider not posting documentation of criminal activity to the internet for all to see. (Organizers apparently didn’t tell many of the attendees that it was someone else’s house.) See this tweet, for instance, which has not yet been deleted:
This house is TRAASSSHHHHHED
— Danielle Alexandra (@daniellealex97) September 1, 2013
But this isn’t your average public shaming. Holloway, who helped bring the Patriots to the 1986 Super Bowl, has worked with the DARE anti-drug program, and spent his retirement from the NFL as a motivational speaker and business consultant.
His website is called “Help Me Save 300” and on it he writes, “I want to aside the very strong emotions I’m feeling and focus on the one thing that is extremely clear the lives of these 300 students. [sic] I want them to live. I’ve seen too many young people die because of excessing partying, drugs and alcohol.”
He then launches into an epic 2,500-word essay about how when he was a boy, he “started working when I was 10, to help out and worked every day of my life; just like everyone else in my generation.” There’s a very “kids these days,” tone to it (understandably given recent events in his life). The thrust of it is that Holloway wants to find a way to reach out to all of the teens who destroyed his house and turn their lives around.
After some coverage from local media, Holloway’s site has gotten the community’s attention. He’s received help repairing his home and tracking down stolen items. He got his grandson’s headstone back. Some students have been less, um, amenable to his message of salvation. Here’s an excerpt from one email he received that he posted to the site:
Yes its bad that your house got destroyed but I’d say 90% of the kids there didn’t even know that it was a owned house. I heard of the party and almost went, everyone was told that it was a condemned house. So don’t go around saying these kids need to be saved, that’s bullshit. Your website is ridiculous.
But others have written apologetic emails, which he’s also posted, and shown up to help repair the damage.
Former NE Patriot Brian Holloway and the teens who came to clean his trashed home in Stephentown, NY, today. pic.twitter.com/lZtq8tuGtl
— Phil Demers (@BE_PhilD) September 17, 2013
Moral of the story: they never make very realistic Katy Perry songs about the morning after your epic party. But occasionally, it involves a very public fallout.