An Open Letter to the Drivers of the Sandstone Valley are last Wednesday

Last week, there was an accident involving a 56 year old pedestrian struck not by one, but two vehicles. Several other cars past by, and one lady stayed with her. This letter is those drivers who passed  by the lady that day.



On Wednesday February 20 in the early morning, Wong Shuk Yee was preparing to go about her day. She got up, she got ready and was prepared to go for a walk. The weather was chilly. This  might have been her daily routine walk. She might have liked to start her day with fresh air and a walk. The neighbourhood she lives in is quiet and safe. So she gets ready, plans to be back and she leaves.


Turns out this was her last walk. And the last time she would have seen her family.


I’m sure you were just getting ready for your day. You have your routine to get to work. You left at your regular time, going to do your work, or school. And maybe you were in a rush to get where you needed to be.


Part of her walk was to cross this street. It might have been a street that she tried to cross 1,000 times.


The road you drive might be the same route you drive 1,000 times.


You might have passed each other unknowingly. But on Wednesday, you faced other.


As she was crossing the street, she did not see the oncoming car coming that struck her. The blow was so hard that according to reports, she flipped over the car and landed on the road.


THAT car didn’t stop.


The next two of you would have seen her, but you drove around her to go on with your day.


THEN, one of you dragged her under your car. Then you left.


And then several of you that followed THAT car drove by. Each one perhaps in the same hurry that everyone else is. Or maybe you thought that the person behind you would help.


For one of you, it turned out that is true. As a lady named Tonya Beach came out and stayed with her which help was on the way.


Turns out, you saw that Tonya was helping. Some of you might have looked with morbid curiosity, driving slowly by to look at the thing you can’t not look at. 


But you kept going. And going. Until someone screamed out and asked you to stop!


Two of you have been charged with hit and run. But many of you have been able to go on with your day. The same days and the same routine that perhaps you have just simply lived all the time.


The same routine that has been lost by the family this weekend. The one that was interrupted by a phone call at work. That might have pulled a person out of school.


Because part of your decision to ensure that your routine would continue interrupted someone else’s.


The question that is on everyone’s mind is why? People have theories as to reasons. There are several. The truth is only you know what they are. And the reasons and the decision that legally or not, you will have to live with that decision.


But, I have a second question. What if this person was someone you know? And you had to read this story about how several people passed YOUR  friend or family member. What would you have done? How would you have reacted?  How hard would that be to watch people drive by someone YOU care about to go on with their day?


Because as this weekend past, maybe you visited friends. Perhaps you did some errands around the house. Perhaps you were able to shop. But, you were able to do your weekend things.


Meanwhile, this weekend a family was planning a way to honour someone who you didn’t know, but many cherished and loved. It’s all they could think of this weekend.


And perhaps you may not feel that you are connected and you didn’t know her. But the truth you are connected with her now.


And THAT is the “street”  you need to cross.


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