'I Was Screaming His Name Over And Over And Over'

'I Was Screaming His Name Over And Over And Over'
SEATTLE - The widow of the man killed in a crash that was caused by an unsecured load says she has "no ill feelings" toward the 21-year-old Everett man who investigators believe may have caused the accident.

Gavin Coffee, of Lake Forest Park, swerved his car to avoid some metal shelving that had fallen off back a pickup truck late Friday morning as it was traveling on Interstate 5 near 175th in Shoreline.

Coffee was killed when a Lincoln Town Car plowed into the driver's side of his Honda Civic as he swerved to avoid the shelving.

Heidi Coffee still can't believe that her husband and devoted father of four with a baby on the way is dead.

"It's still surreal to me," she said. "I keep thinking I got to... I can't wait to talk to Gavin about this, but I can't because he's not here."

Gavin Coffee worked as a computer consultant and was a founding member of City Calvary Chapel, which meets at Hamilton Middle School in Seattle.

Coffee had taken the day off from work and was on his way to see his sons play at their soccer camp.

A chilling aspect to the story is how Heidi and their pastor found about the crash. Coffee was on his cell phone with Pastor John Aydelott when the collision occurred.

"All of a sudden I heard Gavin say 'whoa' and then 'whoa' again," said Aydelott. "I heard the car spin out and the crashing."

Remarkably, the phone kept working after the crash and Aydelott could hear freeway sounds.

"I was screaming his name over and over and over again, but no one was speaking," Aydelott said. "Gavin wasn't responding. I could then hear the people trying to rescue him -- the paramedics -- and it didn't sound good."

Aydelott hung up and called Heidi Coffee and told her what he had heard. She was was driving with her daughters and had to stop.

"I just got out and sat down and started to cry. The girls saw me crying and they started to cry," she said.

Still, they were not sure of Gavin's condition.

Desperate for information, the two joined forces and started calling hospitals and 911. They even went to Harborview Medical Center, which is where most trauma victims are taken, but did not find Gavin.

They didn't know if he was dead or alive at this point. They then made the dramatic decision to go to the crash site. It was there that a state trooper told them that Gavin was dead.

"We can't be this traffic report on TV," said Coffee of her feelings being on the scene. "People are probably are saying 'Oh great, look at all this traffic.' You know someone's life is changed forever. Many people's lives are changed forever."

All because of an unsecured load.

"It was such a foolish thing and now there's a family without a dad and I'm going to have a baby in December who's never going to know his dad," said Coffee.

The suspect was released from the King County Jail after posting bail Friday night and has not yet been charged.

If prosecutors decided to charge him under the state's new "Maria's Law," named after Maria Federici, who lost her sight after hitting an unsecured load on the highway, the suspect could received up to one year in jail and a $5,000 fine.

That's the maximum sentence for anyone who causes a death with their unsecured load.