I don't have a video to release this week so I decided to continue with part 14 of the #SDKstory series. It's been just over a month since part 13 and I honestly didn't know if the series would continue. The book is still being written as the years pass by but I wanted to make sure everyone knows why there is an "SDK". My little brother Mitchell, that's why.
If Mitch had never shown me how to use Adobe Premiere Pro and the basics of editing there would have never been any videos and most likely never a Stompdown Killaz. He also provided me with the camera that all of the early videos were filmed on, it was a shitty little camera called a KODAK Easyshare 360x240 and it was powered by double AA batteries. The first 2 videos we did are still on YouTube today "ARTWORK BY LABEL SDK" & "STOMPDOWN KILLAZ SLIDE SHOW" the funny thing was I didn't realize it was a VIDEO camera so I just took 1000's of photos during the painting and then Mitch would make a high speed time lapse video to music.
The very first 2 videos on the Stompdown channel are these videos my brother made while I watched in amazement. Never did I think editing videos would be something for me but after those first 2 my brother put the editing software on my laptop and told me I was on my own. Looking back he was actually giving me the gift of knowledge. I suffered for months trying to figure out the software, my computer was slow and it would crash causing me to lose days of hard work. I was living in a small unfinished room of my parents basement with my two large dogs. All I had was a small old lady chair that was so uncomfortable. After 6 months of sitting in this chair trying to learn how to edit I wore the arm rests right down to the bare wood.
There were so many times I wanted to give up because I didn't think I was smart enough to do all this computer shit that came so naturally to my brother. Thankfully I could always go ask my brother for help and no matter what he always stopped what he was doing and showed me exactly how to figure it out. Like I said, if it wasn't for him I would have given up. That was 2006. On October 25 2014 I woke up much earlier than usual and had the most powerful feeling take over my body. I needed to leave my house immediately and I didn't know why. My girlfriend was worried that something was wrong and followed me out of the house. I walk everyday for about an hour, it helps me think, but today I went in the opposite direction from my daily route. I was being pulled towards something that I couldn't understand. After about 10 minutes I arrived at a hotel that I've never been to in my life. On the ground floor there is a large wall sized window that looks down the entire hallway of the first floor. I walked through the garden to the glass and said to my girlfriend "there is something I hate in there!!" and I began banging on the windows with both my fists, almost breaking the glass. All of this freaked my girlfriend out and people in the hotel were terrified. Eventually she convinced me to go back home and we left.
It was still very early and we tried to go back to sleep but it was impossible, I thought something was wrong with me and so did my girlfriend. She had things to do and reluctantly left me at home for the day. At 3 PM I got a call from my dad but when I answered it my aunt was on the phone and all she said was "they found Mitchell dead!!!!!!!!" and she just began crying so hard I couldn't even understand why she was calling me from my dads phone. My little brother Mitchell was found dead in that same hotel I was screaming at 8 hours earlier. His body was in that hotel. He had passed away during the night from an accidental overdose. To this day I can not explain how I knew he was in there but clearly there is something else going on in this world that I don't understand. The reason my aunt called me on my dads phone was because when the police came to my parents house and told them what happened my dad collapsed and an ambulance was called, because of his heart condition they were worried he had a heart attack. My aunt who lived in the basement heard the screaming and came upstairs. When I arrived to my parents house minutes later it was a hectic scene with paramedics, police etc. I only stayed for 5 minutes before I left, it was so intense and sad that it was impossible for me to stay there. I don't even know what I did for the next 24 hours. This was almost the end of SDK. I stopped going to the Ephin Shop. From 2014 until 2019 I barely cared about making videos anymore.
One of the big reasons for working so hard and risking everything all these years was to help my brother Mitch, he had been struggling with addiction and anxiety for so many years and for some reason I thought that if I created something so big and famous that I could help my brother. It was just desperation. I know now that unless someone truly wants to get better there is no way anyone else can help them. My brother really never seemed scared of consequence, he had jumped out of 100's of air planes and dozens of base jumps from bridges and cliffs. I have met a lot of fearless people in my life but none that compared to my brother. His birthday was on March 19 and it made me realize that I needed to tell his story before I close this chapter in the SDK story series but I will also use this story for my own personal closure. He would have been 31 this year. I know a lot of you can relate to the loss of a loved one but I also want to use my experience as motivation and proof that we can overcome any and all obstacles thrown in our way.
Don't measure success by how high you climb but how high you bounce when you hit bottom. Never give up. #stompdownkillaz