Standing at a memorial for Josie Evans

Evans family recalls vibrant, young Josie Evans as Lake Country road improvements unveiled

Four years after Lake Country girl killed on Bottom Wood Lake Road, Josie's brother and mother recall their family member

A few days after the District of Lake Country completed a significant upgrade to Bottom Wood Lake Road, Linda Evans and her son Jesse walked the road, passing new high visibility safety posts that separate the walking lane from vehicle traffic.

They stopped to tie a ribbon on a memorial to family member Josie Evans, the 15-year-old George Elliot student who in 2010 was struck and killed by a driver who didn’t see her as she walked home from school on a dark winter evening on the quiet stretch of road.

For mom Linda and brother Jesse, the completion of a project that was motivated by Josie’s death is at least something positive in what has been a terrible tragedy.

“It’s something special for sure,” said Jesse, now 24. “She seemed like she had a lot of promise, like she was the good one in the family. It happened when she was too young. Me and my brother are tradesmen but she probably would have been in Africa, helping out people there.”

In the aftermath of Josie’s death and while the courts dealt with the Lake Country senior charged in the accident, Linda Evans moved into action, working tirelessly for safety improvements and with the help of Josie’s friends (Teens for Change) handing out high visibility buttons for kids to wear.

“I think of her every day,” said Linda, standing at the memorial to Josie and in front of a new plaque in her daughter’s name that reads ‘For Josie…Be Visible.’

“It’s a hard thing to deal with so, for me, taking positive action gives you some comfort and something to do so you are not dwelling on the negative aspects,” she said. “Josie was a very considerate kid, the kind of kid you want. She was always true. She didn’t like it when her friends fought. She thought people should get along.”

The Bottom Wood Lake Road project focussed on improving safety for pedestrians and bikers on the 1.5 kilometre stretch of road. It features lighting, bus pull-outs and flexible bollards separating the pedestrian pathway from the bike lane and the main road.

“I was really pleased,” said Evans of the improvements. “There are more options for people who don’t have to take their vehicles. There is more lighting. It’s good for the whole community. It’s really a comfort to know that positive changes have come from it.”

For Jesse, time will never bring his sister back, but he too takes solace in the fact her death is helping others.

“I think she would have made an impact no matter what,” he said. “It’s probably making her happy that she left something behind. It’s just too bad that this had to happen.”

Just Posted

High winds cause havoc for sailors

RCMP assists boats with sail problems on Okanagan Lake

Late night confrontation between two men in Peachland

RCMP was called to the scene of a physcial encounter on Saturday evening where one man was injured

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

Your weekend story highlights

Each weekend, we choose top stories from the week for you to enjoy

Chinese pioneers honoured

A sign was unveiled in City Park Saturday to honour the Chinese contributions to Kelowna

VIDEO: Sears liquidation sales continue across B.C.

Sales are expected to continue into the New Year

Who is Curtis Sagmoen?

The Observer reveals what we know about the man attached to the Silver Creek property where human remains were found

VIDEO: Oprah Winfrey and a celebrities attend ‘B.C. Miracle Concert’

Fundraiser featured Foster, Steven Tyler, The Tenors, Matteo Bocelli, Laura Bretan, Carly Rae Jepsen

First-place Warriors edge Caps, visit ‘Backs today

West Kelowna scores twice in 25 seconds early in third to overtake Cowichan Valley in BCHL action

Grab a book; thank your librarian

All libraries are cornerstones of their communities and we celebrate them during library month

Five decades of volunteering

Even though she is approaching 70, Merle kindred continues to volunteer around the world

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

Vehicle leaves scene after striking lamp post

After hitting a lamp post on Springfield Road, a vehicle has left the scene

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Most Read