A DEVASTATED mum has relived the horror of discovering her son had been killed in a car crash in an emotional appeal to launch Fife’s latest road safety campaign.
Sonia Ewens (39), of Kirkcaldy, chose to speak out to try to save other families from going through the same suffering she experienced when her 19-year-old son Jamie died after his car struck a barrier.
Jamie had bought his yellow Citroen Saxo just days before the accident in July last year. He did not have a driving licence and was not insured.
He was not wearing a seatbelt and died at the scene of the crash in Station Road, Lochgelly. A friend, Emma Murray, who was 18 at the time, was in the car at the time. She did not suffer serious injuries.
Sonia said: “The day he died was the worst day of my life.
“Jamie lost his life at an extremely young age, he had his whole life ahead of him, but he’s not here any more.
“He is not the one that has to deal with this. We are the ones left to live with this for the rest of our lives.
“Please just think about what you are doing on the roads and be safe.”
Sonia said despite having ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and dyslexia, Jamie had worked hard after leaving school. He’d spent a year as an apprentice mechanic before taking a job with a road maintenance company.
“He was very good at his job and his boss had nothing but good things to say about him. I was really proud of him for that.”
She added: “Jamie loved to party and lived for the weekend. He had a lot of friends. When he came home on Friday it was on to Facebook to find out who was having a party and he would be off until Sunday night.”
Sonia said Jamie had a love of everything on wheels – from roller skates and bikes at a young age, to motorbikes and cars.
However, she wasn’t happy when he bought a car of his own, and she issued him with an ultimatum.
“His friends had cars. He earned enough money to be able to buy one, so he did. I could see his point, I suppose, we forget what it was like when we were young, we wanted to get the things other people had.
‘‘He was just a typical teenager.
“But I told him he didn’t have a licence and shouldn’t be on the roads. I told him my fear was someone would get killed, or worse still, he would be killed.
“He wanted to get a licence but because he had dyslexia, he was worried about the theory test. It was a fear. It was a lot easier to go and buy a car than pass the test.
“I told him he couldn’t live here any more if he kept the car. Then I got a phone call saying he wasn’t coming home.”
Sonia recalled the day Jamie died.
“I was five months pregnant and we’d gone to Perth for a private scan. On the way home I had bad contractions and thought I was going to lose the baby.
“When we got home a neighbour told us the police had been at the door and we were to contact them. I couldn’t find the number, but I knew then it was something to do with Jamie.
“I thought if it was serious my mum would know, so I phoned her.
‘‘It was my brother Mark who answered. I asked him what had happened and he said: ‘Sonia, it’s Jamie. He’s dead.’
“I just crumpled to the floor. It was the worst day of my life.”
Jamie’s death has had a terrible impact on the whole family, from his grandparents to his nieces, nephews and cousins, and his friends. His brother Jack (8) says he misses Jamie’s face so much and wishes he was still here to play PS3 games with him.
Jamie never got the chance to meet his new wee brother, Archie, now six months old.
Sonia, who is on anti-depressants and is due to receive counselling, said: “It’s unbelievable in some ways, but we’re trying to get our lives sorted out.
“I’ve been quite numb over the last year, but I’ve got the other kids as well and they keep me busy.”
Powerful message on DVD to target young drivers
SONIA EWENS has recorded a moving and heartbreaking interview to put across a powerful road safety message to young and inexperienced drivers.
And the Kirkcaldy mum had a clear message for the authorities too, saying: “You need a licence to buy a gun, but cars can kill too. Why don’t you need one to buy a car?”
Sonia is supporting Fife Police in its latest initiative to educate young drivers of the dangers they face on the roads – and the dangers they pose to others.
She speaks openly about the tragic road crash which claimed the life of her son Jamie, and she explains the terrible impact his death has had on her family.
Sonia said: “I don’t want other families to go through this.
“If they value their lives and value their families, then just think about them. Please just think about what you are doing on the roads and be safe. Don’t make any drastic actions.”
Superintendent Dave McCulloch said: “I have seen too many people like Jamie killed on the roads because they were driving too fast or not wearing a seatbelt. Young and inexperienced drivers need to understand how dangerous cars can be.
“They need to treat the road, speed signs, other drivers and pedestrians with respect.
“I wish to thank Sonia for working with the police to help us educate and inform young drivers how to stay safe on our roads.”
“All too often I am called to fatal or serious road accidents which leave a devastating impact on the family and local community.”