Sixteen hours after it was launched, a GoFundMe for an Oak Bay municipal worker who died at work after being hit by a driver has now raised more than $54,000 of the $150,000 fundraising total.
Steve Seekins, 52, has been identified as the worker who died, and the GoFundMe is in support for his wife and two school-aged children.
A GoFundMe has been set up by one of our employees to support the family of the employee who was tragically killed at work this morning.
We are looking to support the family of the employee in any way we can. Any and all donations are appreciated. https://t.co/w4WLVrQRxh pic.twitter.com/osmqd0OqFa
— District of Oak Bay (@DistrictOakBay) May 17, 2023
The crash occurred while Seekins was inspecting a manhole cover in the 1700-block of Monterey Avenue around 8 a.m. on May 17.
He was pronounced deceased at the scene, according to police, and the driver of the vehicle was taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Oak Bay Police Chief Mark Fisher says the driver, a 66-year-old woman and resident of Victoria, was driving at a high rate of speed.
“There have been some witnesses that have come forward, and provided evidence of erratic driving prior to this incident in the area of Monterey Avenue. So we’re still collecting that information,” Fisher said.
The stretch of Monterey Avenue has a speed limit of 30 km/h.
“On the face of it, it seems very senseless. It’s disturbing, it’s frustrating, and it’s upsetting to, I’m sure, all members of the community.”
Seekins started working with the District of Oak Bay Engineering, and Public Works less than a year ago.
But he made an impression, according to Steve Rennick, Deputy Director, Engineering & Public Works with the District of Oak Bay.
“The guys on the crew called him ‘Sweet Steve’. And everyone who worked with him said he was very friendly, very passionate. He loved his wife, and kids. They all loved working with him,” Rennick said.
That includes Karen Wiggins, co-owner of Michell Excavating, who hired Seekins over the phone while he was still living in Edmonton.
“I don’t generally hire without meeting a person, and stuff. We ended up having phone conversations.”
Wiggins said Seekins was all about his family including his daughter who is in elementary school, and his son who is in middle school.
“He was a total family guy. His family had been able to get back into the family home in Oak Bay. So he wanted to move out here, but he didn’t want to without a job. Yeah, he was just really down to earth, and about family,” Wiggins said.
A GoFundMe account is now open for donations to help his family with expenses.
Fisher said the driver of the SUV remains in hospital.
Saanich Police is assisting with the investigation into the crash, and anyone with information, dashcam or home security footage is asked to contact [email protected].
READ MORE: Municipal worker dies in ‘serious motor vehicle crash’ in Oak Bay: police