More than $45,000 raised for 16-year-old Saanich boy who died after being struck in a crosswalk

More than $45,000 raised for 16-year-old Saanich boy who died after being struck in a crosswalk

It was the crosswalk at Cedar Hill Cross Road and Merriman Drive in Saanich where Kaydence Bourque took his last few steps.

He was hopping off the bus late Monday night, crossing the street just steps from his home when he was hit by a driver in a designated crosswalk.

“His personal belongings were scattered all over the other side of the road,” said witness and neighbour Zul Rajabali.

Kaydence never regained consciousness and was pronounced dead Tuesday afternoon.

Today his mother Crystal is remembering Kaydence as a kind and loving straight-A student who played saxophone in his school jazz band ,and loved to make people laugh.

“I can’t believe this is the last time I will ever be able to hold his hand or kiss his head. Our hearts are broken into a million pieces,” Crystal wrote in a Facebook post.

So far the community has rushed to raise more than $45,000 for the family within 24 hours.

Among those who donated were the Bui family, who in 2017 faced a similar nightmare when their daughter Leila was hit by a speeding, distracted driver, also in a marked Saanich crosswalk.

“We are very heartbroken for the Bourque family,” Kairry Nguyen, Leila’s mother told CHEK News in a statement. “It brought back the gut-wrenching and heartbreaking pain I felt the day of and days following Leila’s accident. No parents should have to watch their child leave this world before them.”

Meanwhile, Kaydence’s death has prompted calls for Saanich to move quicker on safer road upgrades.

“This incident could have possibly been avoided,” said Philip Marciniak, a Saanich local and daily cyclist.

Marciniak and others will be demonstrating outside Saanich municipal hall Friday at 2 p.m. to pressure council for reduced speed limits and faster infrastructure updates across the municipality.

Meanwhile, a crowd-sourced open street map was inundated with updates from the public overnight. Saanich showed a high number roads where the public reported no sidewalks whatsoever.

The municipality though, points to where they have made improvements.

“Over the past two years, Saanich constructed four kilometres of new sidewalks and built or improved 23 crosswalks in Saanich,” said the municipality in a Thursday morning press release highlighting their commitment to road safety.

As for the Bourque family, they’re spending the holiday season planning their son Kaydence’s funeral — who is giving until the end by donating his organs, so strangers could live.

Kori SidawayKori Sidaway

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