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27th Jun 2016

“I am sorry you died last night” – A real-life story that will put everything in perspective


This is truly devastating.

Kate Slattery was killed on June 22nd as she was ‘safely riding her bicycle’ when a speeding car ran a red light at an intersection in San Francisco, California, and struck her.

The 26-year-old died from the impact.

Pamela Day, a passerby, witnessed the accident and stopped to comfort the girl – a stranger.

Pamela stayed with Kate so that she was not alone, and in the wake of her death, penned a moving account of what happened. Why she stopped and how she will be remembered.

“I will continue to think of you in the sunshine, spending beautiful evenings, laughing with those you love”.

Pamela uploaded the story on her Medium account – a platform where readers and writers can connect and share ideas.

A sobering read that puts everything in perspective given the few days of madness that just passed.

I am sorry

You died last night. You were hit by a car at Howard & 7th in San Francisco when you were riding your bike through the intersection. I was a passenger in the orange prius. We saw the SUV hit you, and speed off. We screamed ‘No! No! No!’. But our screams were not heeded.

You did not know what hit you, how could you?

I wish you were made of steel

The man I was with and I ran to you. I tried to find your pulse. I couldn’t. I held your hand, someone yelled at me not to touch you. We stayed with you. You were not alone. We were loving you. We wanted to save you, help you, protect you.

The EMT came fast and gave you CPR until they got your heart started. But you know it was not enough.

I am so sorry it wasn’t enough. I am sorry that we weren’t magic. That we couldn’t conjure a Patronus to protect you. That we were not superhuman or superheroes. That we didn’t have miracles in our pockets from Elon Musk to bend time — just for 10 seconds. If we could have, we would have.

We were sorely lacking. We were just humans.

I am sorry you died last night. I knew last night you were young, I now know you were — just 26 years old. You were killed with so much life left to live, so much potential, so much in front of you. I am so sorry you died having been here so briefly.

You were loved.

Your friends and roommates have reached out — they love you so much. People who love and are loved have had the sweetest taste of life. I am thankful for those who loved you so, and I am sad you don’t get to be an old loved and loving woman.

Your friends and family know you were not alone. I told them, don’t worry. I wanted them to know that we strangers were with you, not as strangers but as your human family caring desperately for you as our own.

For a few hours last night I was holding you in full recovery. Imagining you riding your bike, laughing as if 8:24pm had never happened. Then I read that you had died.

I am so sorry you died. I am so sorry we couldn’t save you.

You did not suffer, you felt no pain. I believe you were enjoying the summer evening light, your mind thinking how beautiful it was, and that you were filled with life — with joy because you are clearly that kind of young woman.

I know that you are now at one with your God in whatever name or form. I know that you are at peace.

I will continue to think of you in the sunshine, spending beautiful evenings, laughing with those you love. Godspeed.

I am so sorry you died last night. I will never forget you.


The world needs more Pamela Days.

Kate’s friends read the post and were compelled to comment on Pamela’s kindness…

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Random strangers left responses commending Pamela on her kindness and passion

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Pamela, thank you for reminding us all of the goodness in the world.