Mar 03, 2014 - VICTIM'S MOTHER CRIES FOUL OVER CLAIMS COCHRANE RCMP ASKED HER TO MOVE SON'S ROADSIDE MEMORIAL [Brandon Thomas]

Still reeling from the loss of her son at the hands of a drunk driver in late 2012, a Cochrane mother says she’s shocked that RCMP suggested she relocate a roadside memorial in his honour amid claims they’ve received “numerous complaints about potential hazards with well-wishers visiting the area.

“We put it right where he died — how can you change the spot where he died?” said Kim Thomas, mother of victim Brandon Thomas, as she sobbed during a phone interview Monday.

Thomas said she doesn’t fault the RCMP but pleaded with those phoning in the complaints to stop. She said she is always careful to park at a roadside turnout five minutes from the memorial and only crosses the highway when it’s safe to do so.

 “That’s the only place in this world where I feel close to Brandon,” she said, adding that “two or three cars” could be squeezed in between the memorial and the adjacent Highway 22. “Please help me, I need to still be able to go there.”

Thomas was driving along Highway 22 south of Cochrane when a pickup truck RCMP allege was being driven in the wrong lane slammed into him head-on. Thomas died on scene.

Ryan Jordan Gibson, who was 22 at the time of the crash, pleaded guilty to two drunk-driving related charges in January and lawyers have on both sides have said they will seek a two-year sentence to be served in federal prison.

Thomas’ memorial once included numerous prized possessions, including his wallet, X-box controller and family photos, but it was hit by thieves last August. Some of the items have since been replaced by friends and family.

Cochrane RCMP Cpl. Brad White confirmed meeting with Thomas Monday but declined to reveal details of their discussion out of respect for her privacy. He did confirm complaints from motorists in the area.

“We investigate those and try to find resolutions and work with the people involved, and that’s basically as much as I can say,” he said.

Source: Metro News

Last updated on: 2014-03-12 | Link to this post