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Las Vegas, NV

ERIN RIEK - MOTHER

December 1st 2020 was a Tuesday. I remember because I had just got a job working from home and this was on only my second day working. I had been home all day in the office, when Reese (13) and Paige (12) and Tristan (11) Kyanne's three older siblings had just gotten home at around 3:50 and Reese and Paige immediately came into the office to ask me if they could walk to the Chevron gas station on Midland and Roosevelt about 2 blocks away from our house. They had done this walk before, and at the ages of 13 and 12,  I felt they knew the dangers and how to be safe well enough they would be fine. Well, Kyanne heard all and knew all, and when she heard her big sisters were going to get a snack at the gas station and Kyanne knew that meant …. candy..... So my beautiful blue eyed girl came rushing into the office "I wanna go too Mom, please please please PLEASE!"

"No Kyanne, I don't think you should go."

Kyanne: ""Please mom..please!" with her fingers interlacing as she clasps her hands together in front of her big huge smile

Then Reese came around the door "Don't worry Mom, we will be really careful... I promise."

me: "I don't even think I have any money, let me look in my purse." honestly hoping that would give me an excuse to not let her go.... but low and behold I opened my wallet to one $5 bill... As I pulled it out I contemplated lying to her and telling her I didn't have any money.

"Here baby, you can get 1 piece of candy..." as I handed my beaming girl the money and she squeeled in excitement.

"Two pieces of candy??!" she asked in a question yet answered at the same time (if that makes sense)

"One..." I said 

Kyanne: "TWO!!!" as she held up two fingers,

me: "okay two" as I gave in to her cute charm, and she wrapped her arms around me squeeling in excitement. She had just started walking with her sisters to the park across the street from our house so she was excited to get to walk somewhere new. She ran out to get her socks, shoes and coat on, ran in and gave me a hug and a kiss and as they left I yelled out "You girls be careful!" while Reese and Paige exclaimed together "WE WILL!" and the front door shut.

(This part is from my girls point of view) 

There were a few things that happened on that walk that could have changed the course of things. During the walk to the gas station Kyanne had lost her shoe in front of one of the local churches there on Midland. So they had to stop and put her shoe back on. After that the girls make it to the gas station and Kyanne picks out her TWO pieces of candy, a sour candy spray and watermelon bubblegum. At the counter the girls are greeted by a gentlemen working there and Kyanne goes to pay but does not have enough for her two pieces she picked out. As the girls begin to tell her she has to put one of them back, the gentlemen says "Don't worry about it! I'll cover the rest." and let Kyanne have her two pieces of candy and they left the store that gentlemen not knowing he just gave my baby girl the last gifts she will ever recieve. Her three favorite things, candy and kindness, and love. As the girls left the gas station they proceeded to walk through the parking lot to the intersection light on Roosevelt and Midland where they stood and waited for the right to cross. As they waited the older girls debated on what crosswalk to use, Kyanne began to open her gum, and they heard the words "You can cross" as the little walking man appeared prompting them to go. Around this time it was about 4:10 or so in the afternoon and the sun was already beginning to set. As they began their walk Kyanne managed to pull a piece of gum, showed it to her sisters and said "Look it's PINK! It's so beautiful." and popped it in her mouth. Paige walking while leadingthe string of girls across the road replied and said "Yeah it is." as Paige continued to walk she describes just feeling Kyannes hand slip out of hers. Reese says she did not see anything coming. As they crossed midland, a young male driver was making a left turn from roosevelt to midland, driving a full size pickup and struck Reese and Kyanne, barely missing paige. Reese was thrown, knocked unconscious, and sustained severe road rash on the left side of her body. Kyanne lay where she had been hit, in the crosswalk. Paige not seeing the truck, yet seeing her sisters both lying on the street put her in a state of shock and confusion. As Reese began to slowly come to and try to get off the ground, Paige intinctively thought Kyanne would also be okay. As Kyanne lay still on the street, Paige begins to talk to her

"Kyanne are you okay? Kyanne, we need to get you home, we need to take you home to mom so she can make sure youre okay? Kyanne?" and as her loving big sister went to swoop her up off the ground to carry her home, Paige witnessed the extent of her baby sister's injuries.... Kyanne was gone. Paige immediately puts kyanne down in horror and begins to yell for help as people in the intersection are in their cars screaming and crying having witnessed the horrific scene. 

 

As I sit at home in my office, I hear an ambulance rush by which isnt out of the norm given we live right next to an ambulance house. As I am working, my roommate comes in and tells me the police have been trying to call me on my cell (which was on silent for work) that something happened at the gas station and we need to get there now. My heart sank and I slipped any boots i could find on, my grandaddys jacket was right at reach so i grabbed that and off we went. by the time we got there (which was only a minute drive) the traffic was already so backed up, i couldnt even see the intersection other than fire trucks and lights. I hopped out of the car, and ran the rest of the way to the intersection, saying please God no, please God NO! knowing it was something bad. 

 

As I approached the scene I was immediately greeted by police trying to keep people back and I hear this blood curtling "MOM!" a sound I had never heard, but knew it was from my girls. I scan the scene and see EMT's and officers holding Reese and Paige as they try to stand from the ground, their legs shaking and faces stained with tears. I screamed and pointed at them "I AM THEIR MOM, MOVE!" and just pushed through as the officers tried to move from my path. I screamed out "WHERE's KYANNE?!" as I immediately noticed she was not standing with them and there was no gurney taking her to the hospital. So my eyes scanned for an officer, and I recognized one and pointed, "YOU!!! Where is my daughter? Where is Kyanne?" and he said "Ma'am before I tell you anything i'm going to need you to calm down." and I just kept continually screaming "WHERE IS KYANNE? WHERE IS MY DAUGHTER?" and he continually kept asking me to calm down. So I began the 20 questions "Is she okay?"

"No ma'am"

"Is she hurt?"

"No ma'am..." and the look of heartbreak fell on his face and I knew..

"Is she dead?" as my voice shook and cracked, feeling like I was going to throw up. I remember his face, his tears as he just looked at me and shook his head not even able to mutter the words. As he shook his head i looked over and in the crosswalk laid a tarp. As I saw it I immediately started to scream out her name "KYANNE!!!! KYANNE!!! I need to get to her! I need to pray over her! Let me go!" as the officer held me back with all his might. As he pulled me off the road I laid on the grass punching the ground repeatedly, screaming out from a pain I had never known before, but had feared my whole life. I screamed at God to bring her back, to take me, even if that ment I was going to Hell, I didn't care. I kept trying to go over to her body to be with her one more time but the police officers refused, as Reese and Paige begged me not to crying and screaming "No Mom you don't want to, NO!" After what felt like an eternity I finally got into the ambulance with my two girls Reese and Paige and we were driven to a local hospital. I was there for the rest of the night screaming and crying continuing to beg God to raise her from the dead, let her be a miracle. 

 

As for the drivers point of view I will try to tell it my best BUT I may be able to get him to tell his side. I do not know if he was sitting at the light or coming down Roosevelt already when the light went from red to a flashing yellow arrow for him, but he claims the sun was at just the wrong place, to make it to where he could not see if people were in the crosswalk. As he approached the intersection, he saw no incoming CARS were coming and made the left turn not thinking to yield and make sure noone was crossing. Unfortunaltely, he made the turn and struck Reese, and Kyanne instantly taking Kyannes life. He pulled over and stayed at the scene. He was not drunk, or intoxicated, he had insurance, a valid license, everything.... But because he didnt take 10 extra seconds to make sure noone was crossing before he turned he not only killed a child, but changed the course of his life and the life of dozens of others. Kyannes sisters Reese and Paige will have to live with these memories for the rest of their lives and noone can take that away from them. The girls did what they were taught to do, and I am so proud of them as a mother. We have learned that sharing their story helps us to heal, and makes the world a better place. There is always purpose from our pain. 

"This was my rock bottom.  I have never in my life felt so much emptiness, hoplessness, and despair."
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