A survivor of the recent tragic accident at Old Sandy Bay is today thanking God for sparing his life, after that horrible experience on Sunday, September 11.
The survivor, Jermandi Richardson was released from hospital on Tuesday September 20.
Five young men from Clare Valley lost their lives in the tragic accident at Old Sandy Bay, when the mini van in which they were traveling toppled over an embankment.
Four of the victims died at the scene and one died later in hospital.
In an interview with SEARCHLIGHT on Wednesday September 21, Richardson said when he saw his friends dead at the scene of the accident, he went into shock and thought he was dead too.
“I really thought I was dead too, and I tried to move myself to make sure that I was alive.”
The 23 year old Clare Valley resident said he was riding in the back seat of the vehicle.
“When we landed below, somebody was on top of me and my left foot was jammed in the van,” Richardson explained.
For this young man, the most horrific memory of the accident was seeing the body of his best friend, Giovanni Barker at the scene.
Richardson recalled that after he was able to free himself and move around a bit, he saw Giovanni.
“When I saw him, I kept calling Dawg, Dawg, but he never answered and I realized that he was dead.”
Richardson said that apart from being blood relatives, he and Giovanni grew up together, and they were best of friends.
In addition to Giovanni Barker, Ishmael Bruce, Elvis Harold, Khalil Robin and Kenroy Haywood also died in the accident.
They were all passengers on board mini van H8190, which was traveling from Clare Valley to Owia for the funeral of murder victim Rohan ‘Charla’ Rawlins.
In tears, Richardson recalled seeing “bare dead people” at the accident scene.
Richardson who broke down in tears said “they were not just my friends, but my family too.”
“This is so hard, I can’t even say how I feel.”
The young man recalled that “everything seemed normal “ when they all left Clare Valley after lunch on Sunday, September 11 and tragedy was far from their thoughts.
Richardson suffered a puncture to his liver and other minor injuries in the accident.
“I am feeling good and I thank God for life, but tears does come to my eyes when I think of my friends who died, especially when I see their pictures.”
Richardson is expecting the birth of his first child in about three months.
He feels God protected him in the accident so that he could live to be a good father to his child.
He is also thankful to persons who were on the accident scene early, especially to the lady who was on her phone, asking for help.
Relatives are currently making preparations to bury their loved ones who perished in the incident but funeral details have not yet been released.