21-year-old allegedly hit on purpose

A young Abbotsford man about to embark on a Hawaiian vacation with his friends is dead after an apparently deliberate hit-and-run yesterday.



At about 2:20 a.m. yesterday, Silas O’Brien, 21, was on his way to the airport with childhood friends Sam Dooley and Luke Stevens, both also 21, when they tried to pass a white Ford F250 truck on 16th Avenue just east of 264th Street in Langley.



The driver of the truck, apparently angered, ran them into a ditch and drove away.

The three friends got out to check for damage and a silver Honda stopped to see if they were OK. When they said that they were, the driver left. Soon after, the Ford returned.

"According to two of the males, it came straight for them," said Cpl. Brenda Marshall of Langley RCMP. Dooley and Stevens managed to jump out of the way but O’Brien was hit.

Ed Byskal, O’Brien’s pastor at Cloverdale Bibleway Church, spoke with the young men at a church gathering the night before.

"Because he was leaving this morning for Hawaii he was saying goodbye to all of his family," he said. "The last thing he did was say farewell, not knowing that this was going to take place this morning."

Many have called O’Brien’s death the result of extreme road rage, though Cpl. Dale Carr of the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team was hesitant to label it so until police can talk to the suspect. "We want to know what was going through the individual’s head," he said.

Police are looking for the white Ford F250 truck, which has a snowmobile rack and significant damage to the front.