WATCH: It’s been six years since a 13-year old boy died after being struck by a small pick up truck while crossing Sooke Road. Now his mother and a close friend are pleading to have items stolen from his roadside memorial returned. Luisa Alvarez reports.
Yannick Aubin stares at the almost bare memorial site for her son AJ Wakeling.
“It never looked this bare ever, ever,” said Aubin.
During a regular visit to the memorial, she discovered that several items were missing including angel statues and two crosses.
“What does it take for somebody to be that low to do that? and why? I would really just like to know why?” said Aubin.
Her son AJ was struck and killed by a small pick up truck while crossing Sooke Road in 2012.
After the tragedy, those who knew AJ put up the memorial and Aubin often added little trinkets to remember her son by.
“He always wanted to spoil everybody and enjoyed other people being happy,” said Aubin.
“That’s what he lived for making other people happy even at his expense.”
Eli Thuot who was just five at the time of AJ’s death.
He says he was like a brother to him and he still remembers him vividly as he clutches a photo he says captures who AJ was.
“He has angel wings and a top hat kind of goofing off right there, he was always getting a chuckle out of people,” said Thuot.
The memorial was a spot he came to remember his friend.
“It was very powerful to me.”
But now, staring in disbelief, he says it just doesn’t bring him the same peace.
“It’s just not very happy anymore.”
In an emotional plea, Yannick took to Facebook and posted pictures of the stolen items.
While she says the act was “cowardly and useless,” the positive community response has been amazing.
Aubin says she’s received hundreds of messages and people have offered to replace what was stolen.
“That just goes to show me that it is everybody’s memorial, it’s not just mine, its everybody’s,” said Aubin.
They’ve vowed to rebuild the memorial, and this time hope to make it a more permanent, and they did have one final request.
“If you could bring them back (the stolen items), then we would forgive you, and AJ would forgive you too,” said Thuot.