Dead man's mother urges driver to forgive themselves
THE passing of 23-year-old Luke Shepherd is regularly at the forefront of two women's minds - but for very different reasons.
One of the most difficult parts of Luke's mother Sue's life is the thought that she will never see her son and his cheeky smile again.
Yet despite her grief, Sue wants to reach out to the young woman in the wrong place, at the wrong time.
Sue has discovered the driver who accidentally hit her son during a freak car accident on the night of May 25 last year was a young woman.
Luke was flung from his car after it rolled several times on the corner of Ridgelands and McKenzie Rds at Alton Downs.
He died after he was accidentally hit by an oncoming vehicle.
Hundreds of people attended the young diesel fitter apprentice's cremation.
"Everyone who knew Luke will never forget his smile, quick wit, vibrant energy, humour, and the beautiful man he was," Sue said.
"Luke will stay with us until our time is up.
"The hardest part is waiting for that time to pass until we get to be with him again."
As the first anniversary of his death looms closer, Sue wants to publicly send her love to everyone who attended his cremation and to the friends, family, and Ridgelands' and Alton Downs' community who made Luke's life as wonderful as it was.
She also wants to send her love to the woman who accidentally hit Luke as he lay on the road.
"It could have been any one of us, in the same situation," Sue said.
"Luke's time was up on this Earth and no one could change that, as much as we wish we could."
Sue doesn't know who the young woman is, only that she moved to Gladstone after the crash.
But she has a message for her.
"I would really like you to forgive yourself and live your life enjoying the here and now every day," Sue said.
"None of us know when our time is up."
Sue said Luke had alcohol in his system on the night of the accident.
She hopes speaking out about his death will also highlight the dangers of driving after drinking.