She was our star - March Pen crash victim was first in family to attend university
Usually it would take Abigale Rowe approximately five minutes to walk from the bus stop in Spanish Town to her home along March Pen Road, St Catherine.
So when she told her mother, Carol Thompson, that she had just got out of a vehicle, the expectant mom sat waiting to hear her footsteps coming through their gate.
It is customary for the living room to become filled with contagious laughter whenever Rowe gets home from classes at the University of Technology where she was a first-year student.
But on Monday night, there were no smiles in the house - just tears. Rowe, was killed in a motorcycle accident some 300 metres from her gate.
"She has late class every Monday, so I call and asked her how far are you, and she said she just getting off a bus in Spanish Town. I was there waiting for about 20 minutes and I kept wondering how she didn't reach home yet," Thompson said.
When THE STAR visited the family house yesterday, Thompson was a picture of frailty. Tears streamed from her swollen eyes and her voice cracked every time she attempted to speak.
As news of the accident was aired on TVJ's Midday News, a blanket of sadness and sorrow swept across her face as she stared at the spot where her daughter took her last breath.
Her gaze then shifted to the partially crushed water bottle and ripped school bag that were recovered at the scene of the crash and exhaled deeply.
The police said that about 10 p.m. on Monday, Raymond Peart was driving his Honda CBR 600 motorcycle along the Spanish Town Bypass, heading towards Old Harbour, when on reaching the vicinity of March Pen Road, he collided with Rowe, who was a pedestrian.
They both sustained multiple injuries and were transported to the Spanish Town Hospital where they were pronounced dead.
Peart, also known as DJ Venom, worked at FAME FM, a member of the RJRGLEANER Communications Group.
Rowe's stepfather, Eric Falconer, nailed a piece of black cloth on a piece of stick and hung it on their gate to symbolise that his family was in deep mourning.
"It was a horrible sight to see somebody who is so attached to me looking like that," he said as he tried to get the image of Rowe's body lying on the road out of his mind.
Rowe was described by family members as a hard worker, and was the first in her family to attend university.
"She led by example and she left a positive mark on this family, and her drive is one that will always motivate us to go for whatever we want," Rowe's aunt, Kaida Brooks, said. "Abby rise above the stigma about what the expectation of a person living in an inner-city community supposed to be. She was on her way on becoming a brilliant architect and her death is just a shock for everyone."
In a release yesterday, the RJRGLEANER Communications Group expressed its "sympathies and prayers to the families, friends, and colleagues" of both Peart and Rowe.