Stories

The families who have shared their stories know that they will not benefit from a new law. Yet, they are campaigning for wrongful death law reform in BC. Hear them explain why.

(Please note: Our volunteer team is currently working through a large backlog of family stories to get them ready for publishing. This page will be updated regularly.)

Each story features a BC family that was denied access to a trial because their loved one was not a breadwinner.

Family of Theresa Pereira

Family of Theresa Pereira

These families did not get the answers they deserved. No compensation was available for their loss—no support for counselling, time off work, or resources to move on. The injustice of the wrongful death continues to cause suffering.

IN THEIR NAME urges the provincial government to adopt a wrongful death act that truly respects the needs of all British Columbians.

David’s Story

“My father had brittle Type 1 Insulin-Dependent Diabetes Mellitus as well as over 10 other chronic and life-threatening conditions and cognitive deficits consistent with the early onset of dementia. On July 25, 2013 he was picked up by the Chilliwack RCMP and placed in a holding cell and then transferred to the North Fraser Pre-Trial Centre without a C-13, the form that would note any pertinent information about his well-being. My wheelchair-bound father was without his prosthetic leg, medication, insulin, and medical bracelet. For the three days that my father was at North Fraser Pre-Trial Centre, he received no medicine or insulin and consumed nothing other than water and juice. A lack of communication and an utter disregard for patient care among medical professionals, arresting officers, correctional officers, and legal authorities prevented my father from accessing his life dependent insulin; his low insulin levels led to a severe case of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) and Diabetic Vascular Disease Leg Blockage that directly contributed to his fatal heart attack, all while in police custody.” – Jeff, son of David Fast

Read full story

Edward’s Story

“The woman who hit and killed my father got out of the car, looked at my dad’s body, and drove away, leaving him to die on the side of the road. She wasn’t charged with vehicular manslaughter or leaving the scene of an accident. To add insult, not to injury, but to death, my family came to learn that we had no civil recourse because of BC’s Family Compensation Act. According to these antiquated and discriminatory laws, my father’s life was worthless because he was 72-years-old and retired.” – Chelsey, Daughter of Edward Simpkins

Read full story

Melissa’s Story

“The man who caused Melissa’s death only got a $1,500 fine. This is unbelievable and not acceptable. His mistake changed everything in our lives. It’s like we’ve got life sentences of having miserable lives while he doesn’t have to do much. Melissa was 21 years old, ready to start her bright future. Why there’s no value for her and the damages we’ve got, I’ll never understand—lost opportunity, happiness, all life’s great experiences together…” — Hideki, Father of Melissa Mimura

Read full story

Logan’s Story

“On September 10, 2016, my son Logan passed away as a result of a motor vehicle accident. The driver was intoxicated. Logan’s reputation as a kind and caring young man will be forever evident. His close friends are still very much shocked by his passing and the way our court system represented him. Our opinion— shared by many—is that the so-called justice was not only a joke but more of an insult. The idea that our children have no value is absurd. The law, which is supposed to protect us, did the complete opposite.” – Terry, Father of Logan Power

Read full story

Shirley’s Story

“One legal firm and a lawyer in Victoria said it sounded like a criminal case and to get a case number from the RCMP to investigate it. The constable suggested it might be criminal negligence, and I suggested there was evidence confirming malice aforethought, intent, advance planning, and motives of discrimination and cost-containment, which can all add up to a culpable homicide, specifically murder in the first degree. Never in fifty years of nursing have I ever seen such condoned harm-doing and such a system of legal impotence when the perpetrator is privileged and in a position of power and trust…” — Sharon, Partner of Shirley Lamb

Read full story

Frank’s Story

“The day after my Dad died in police custody, I called the police department and asked what had happened. The Police Chief offered to pay for my Dad’s funeral but I said not until I found out what exactly happened to him…” – Frank Trent Watts Jr., Son of Frank James Watts

Read full story

Theresa’s Story

“On May 10, 2006, my mother had a routine laser cataract surgery. At the post-surgery appointment on Thursday, May 18, the doctor said that the surgery had been a success, and that her eye was healing nicely. However, by Sunday May 21, her eye became irritated, sore and swollen. When she woke up the next day, it was much worse – she felt more pain, and when she touched that side of her face, she described the sensation as raw, like an open wound. When she returned to the clinic, the RD froze my mom’s eye in preparation for the procedure. She then left the room to inform the specialist that the freezing solution had been administered. While the RD was out of the room, my mother stopped breathing. To this day, I still don’t know exactly what happened after that dose was administered.” – Beatrice, Daughter of Theresa Pereira

Read full story

Erin’s Story

“That horrible day on January 18th, 2012, she was once again admitted to the emergency room at Delta Hospital. When I arrived, I found my daughter in tears, saying to the nurse, ‘My head hurts so bad – I just want to go home.’ I overheard the nurse tell her, ‘I’ve heard you say this all day,’ and she just walked away, leaving my daughter in the hallway. Erin was overlooked. Once again, she was sent home broken and in tears, told that she just had a sinus infection, as her young boyfriend and I literally carried her out of the hospital. She was braindead the next morning.” – Nona, Mother of Erin Gallagher

Read full story

Chelsea’s Story

“Chelsea was a bright young 23-year-old woman who was just starting her life. Her smile could light up a room in total darkness. We are forever changed. On January 9, 2016, we heard a knock on our front door; it was the police. They looked at us and said that Chelsea passed away…” – Shelly, Mother of Chelsea James

Read full story

Amir’s Story

“My 26-year-old son, Amir Sedghi, was killed in a plane crash on May 4th, 2019, near Smithers, British Columbia. We feel the loss of Amir every day. He was a young man of many talents; he was a musician, businessman, spoke 5 languages, and was motivated to protect nature and wildlife. Only after his death were we even further shocked to learn that my son had no “value” under British Columbia’s wrongful death laws.” – Marzieh, Mother of Amir Sedghi

Read full story

Natasha’s Story

“Tasha was everything to me. She was my only child and throughout her life, I was mostly a single parent. We were very close and usually talked every day. I would be the first person she’d call to share exciting news and vice versa. We were inseparable. My beautiful daughter died suddenly at the young age of 29.” – Ann, Mother of Natasha Forry

Read full story

Lindsey’s Story

“Lindsey was my baby. Before her passing, I had already lost my husband and my other daughter. When I lost Lindsey, I lost my whole family.” – Lorie, Mother of Lindsey Kean

Read full story

Hudson’s Story

“My son, Hudson, was shot and killed by an RCMP officer on July 18, 2015. He was in distress. He was wearing his boxer shorts. He didn’t have a weapon – my son only carried a football, if he carried anything at all. He was shot nine times in front of the South Surrey RCMP detachment, only two blocks from home. It seems like yesterday that it happened, and forever since I’ve seen him.” – Jennifer, Mother of Hudson Brooks

Read full story

Xavier’s Story

“My heart aches because there may be no justice for what happened to my little boy. The doctors, who refused to perform tests on my son, who lied to me and neglected to tell me things that I should have known about my son’s health, may never see any consequences.” – Shayla, Mother of Xavier Mena

Read full story
BC Wrongful Death Law Reform Society

Laura’s Story

“You know we’re not in it for the money. None of us are. We’re there for change.” — Robert, father of Laura White

Read full story
BC Wrongful Death Law Reform Society

Heidi’s Story

“So the doctors who made the mistakes that led to her death had no repercussions. There were no suspensions, there were no firings, there were no re-trainings—there was nothing that was done.” — Catherine, mother of Heidi Klompas

Read full story

Gary’s Story

“It was one of the worst cases of senior abuse and the RCMP was disgusted how bad my dad was treated. And yet, had this happened in my home, I would have been arrested. But he was in a care facility protected and they get away with it.” — Rita, daughter of Gary Davis

Read full story