Daughter visits accident scene where her mom was struck by passing car
'I wish I could have told her how much I loved her and how much she meant to me'
Tessa Demskie gathered her mother's shoes from the accident scene — they'd been knocked off her feet and lay about 12 metres apart.
She also picked up the oxygen mask and the packaging from the safety blanket her mom had been wrapped in after she was hit.
"That's the last spot my mom lived, so I grabbed all of it," said Demskie, who's not sure what she plans to do with the items.
Her mother, 62-year-old Irene Demskie, was struck and killed Saturday by a passing car on the shoulder where highways 616 and 795 meet northwest of Wetaskiwin.
Irene and her boyfriend, Don Shannon, were heading home to Mulhurst Bay from a fishing outing. Shannon's granddaughter accidentally drove into the ditch, so they stopped on the shoulder to pull her vehicle out.
"Mom and Don were wrapping up and putting the tow straps away," Tessa said, when they realized a car was driving straight toward them.
"Don said there was no time to react. The car wasn't braking, and [Irene] looked like a scared deer that didn't know where to go. He said, 'She jumped toward the ditch and that car just swerved toward the ditch last-minute and it hit your mom.'"
RCMP responded to the collision at 6:40 p.m., and in a news release said a woman had been taken to an area hospital "where she later succumbed to her injuries." They did not identify the victim, but family members have since confirmed it was Irene Demskie.
The driver who struck her remained at the scene and is co-operating with RCMP.
Tessa, who lives in Westlock, said the family didn't spend Christmas together this year because they all live a couple hours from each other. Regardless of the distance, she said, she never spoke to her mom "less than five times a day."
"I wish I could have told her how much I loved her and how much she meant to me," Tessa said. "I know she knew that but I wish I could have said it."
Irene loved her dogs and watching hockey, her daughter said, and above all was a remarkable grandma to 10 grandchildren.
"I feel for my children, they were really robbed of a great grandma," Tessa said.
Irene had planned to leave on an extended trip to Arizona next week with her boyfriend.
Tessa said she is hopeful the family will get some answers about what led to the accident.
RCMP are investigating the collision, and no charges have been laid.