I met Kenny in June of 2009. I was 22 and he was 34. I am a blues singer—he’d seen me at one of the many gigs I played that year in California, where I was living at the time. A mutual friend introduced us, and Kenny told me that he loved my voice.
I immediately liked him. He was charming and handsome. I was also attracted to his intelligence—we talked in a deep, philosophical way that first night. He lived in Utah and was just visiting, so I spent the next few days taking him to a local oyster festival and my favorite beaches. He told me a bit about his life: half-Samoan, he was born in Pago Pago, the capital of American Samoa, but was raised a Mormon in California and Hawaii before going to Brigham Young University. He had worked in IT, but when we met, he was looking for new opportunities. We stayed in touch, and “officially” started dating in July when he invited me to Utah. It was on that trip, barreling down the highway in his diesel pickup, when he told me he had a concealed carry license. His gun, he said, was in the console.
I got goosebumps. My uncle killed himself with a gun when I was 9, so I’ve always been scared of them. I told him that story, but he reassured me that he had been extensively trained, and that his gun was for our protection. “This will keep us safer,” he promised.
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