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I wish I could have heard her voice for the last time – Mother

I wish I could have heard her voice for the last time – Mother

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Kiara Tiara Shortte was 17 years old and full of life; she was a good student and wanted to become a nurse or a lawyer.

Unfortunately, Kiara will never realize her dreams and her mother, Merlene Shortte, will never see her daughter fully blossom into the flower she was named after.

On Friday, August 19, around 3 a.m., the black SUV that the teenager was riding in went over an embankment, while travelling along the Hopewell public road in the Mesopotamia Valley. Kiara, a past student of the Marriaqua Government School, the Argyle Primary School and the Adelphi Secondary School, died on the spot.{{more}}

The vehicle, P 782 owned and driven by 50-year-old David Charles of Sayers, had two other passengers: Kiara’s cousin Crystal Shortte, 20 years old and Albert ‘Bat’ Williams, 59 years old of Freeland Mesopotamia.

Charles broke his left leg and Williams fractured two of his ribs. Both men, up to press time, were patients at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital (MCMH), while Crystal, who sustained injuries about her body, was released.

Shortly after the accident, a screenshot (pictured at right) of a message that Kiara is alleged to have sent to a friend, painted a picture of a drunk driver and a teenager scared for her life. SEARCHLIGHT was unable to verify the authenticity of the screen shot, as up to press time the person who is alleged to have received the message and sent it out has not come forward.

The person in the WhatsApp message asks the person believed to be Kiara her location at around 12:15 a.m., to which she replied at 12:24 a.m., ‘Lowmans’ and states that she had just come from ‘gtown,’ meaning Georgetown.

At 2.36 a.m., Kiara says, “Bby me ah tell u me where about in case yp hear accident eh. Me dey going up maroon hill and me scared asf. Driver drunk”.

At 6:32 a.m., the person texted, “Hope u got home safe”. Kiara, who was born on September 8, did not get home safe; she was dead by that time and police are investigating the incident.

“I still in shock, but she still here with me. I’m just hanging in. I have my sister and friends who are keeping me strong. I’m holding the faith,” said Kiara’s mother on Monday, during an interview with SEARCHLIGHT, which was being done a few feet away from a funeral home at Frenches.

At the time of the interview, Kiara’s mother, a security guard, said that she had not yet spoken to the other occupants of the vehicle, but that persons were saying a lot of negative things on social media.

She asked them to desist from scandalizing her daughter’s name.

“It’s painful…I know who have been running their mouth and so on; they have children, but as Bob Marley says, don’t throw stones,” said Merlene.

“I’m still waiting wanting to know exactly what happened. I’m only hearing rumours. I saw a text they say she sent before she died and I was hoping that I could have got into her phone to read the final messages, but I have that phone and it is locked,” said Merlene, who revealed that Kiara is the second of her four children, but her first girl.

“She was always mannerly and respectful and energetic. She always say ‘mommy, don’t worry, I will get it,’ meaning that she knows that I struggled a lot with her from the starting to the end…except that she gone so soon,” said Merlene.

“I’m just keeping the faith. I cannot confirm that the driver was drunk, as people were saying,” noted Merlene, who thinks that her daughter may have died from a broken neck.

She offers advice to young people: “I need young people to listen. No matter how it might be, go with the rules. Your parents are your first teacher and they do not want anything bad to happen to you. Listen to their advice. They say we in modern times, but I realize that the young people are leaving and the old people staying behind.”

Merlene said she last saw her daughter on Tuesday, August 16, and they spoke.

“We have a connection where we sit and talk and laugh; a real good connection and while she was leaving me, she hug me and said mommy, I love you. Don’t take on anything and stress yourself. I wish I could have heard her voice for the last time,” said Merlene, who revealed that her daughter was staying in Rillan Hill with her father for the summer vacation and not at her New Prospect home.

Kiara’s aunt, Louanne Toney of Richland Park, described her niece’s death as “tragic”.

“I feel it like if is my child. We used to go on trips and picnics,” said Toney, adding, “teenagers will always be teenagers and we must do our best and hope they listen.”

Her advice is, “it’s important you ask permission and say where you are going and then maybe you can get advice that might help you make the right decisions.”

The driver of the vehicle declined to talk to the media when he was visited on Monday evening. He said that he was not in the right frame of mind to do so. He, however, spoke to the dead girl’s mother and gave her his side of the story.

Police are investigating. (LC)

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