GMC News

Susan Isaac Shares Her Tribute to the Peckham Family

(Milledgeville, GA) February 17, 2004 – During Friday’s Academic Honors Parade, Ms. Susan Isaac, GMC Assistant Professor of Humanities, (pictured) shared a special tribute that she wrote for the Peckham Family, entitled, “Split Second.” It is reprinted, with her permission, below.

Split Second

No one thinks that their life can change, forever, in a split second, but life does change all the time in dramatic, traumatic, or even subtle ways. Comments, such as “I’ll never forgive you” or “I will always love you,” alter us. However, the most potent word that we not only hear and say, but feel is the word, “loss.” Though this word is comprised of only four letters, its thrust impacts our souls, and in a split second, our life has been altered – broken, and the fragile shell that coats our existence cracks, lies in pieces around us, and all that is left is to rebuild or reinvent our world.
On Saturday, February 7th, Dr. Joel Peckham, a fellow colleague and friend, lived through a life-altering event, when his wife, Dr. Susan Atefat Peckham and his six-year old son, Cyrus, were tragically taken from him in a devastating car wreck. Dr. Peckham is currently in a hospital in Amman, Jordan with a shattered pelvis, and his son, Darius, suffers from a broken leg, while his mother-in-law, Farida, suffers from a broken arm.
When Dr. Peckham first arrived at Georgia Military College, he mentioned frequently his beloved and talented wife – a poet, a painter, and a pianist, and like all proud parents, he pulled out his wallet and presented the pictures of his sons, Cyrus and Darius. Through one conversation with Joel, we knew that at the center of his universe revolved his family. As a loving husband and a wonderful father, Joel’s devotion, patience, and love has guided him, and with the missing presence of his wife and child, Dr. Peckham’s world has been ripped asunder – left a widower and scarred as a father. Now, he must take the role of a single parent for the sake of his surviving son, Darius.
To Dr. Peckham our hearts pour forth in anguish at his loss, and we hope his recovery, both physically and mentally, is as swift as possible, so he can return to his newfound friends and colleagues at Georgia Military College. Until then, we continue to pray for him and his family and to look to God for guidance.