Source: 2006 Yearbook
Catherine Vesely succumbs to traffic accident injuries
Par Dan Rosenbert
Mercredi 26 avril 2006
The family of the late Catherine Vesely, 16, will receive visitors tomorrow and Friday at Wilson-Dallaire Funeral Home on Maple Blvd. in Chateauguay. Catherine succumbed in St. Justine’s Hospital last Thursday to injuries suffered when she was hit by a van at the corner of D’Anjou Blvd. and Maple the previous Thursday, shortly before 9 p.m. A private funeral service will be held on Saturday.
A pall was cast over the entire Howard S. Billings Regional High School community during Easter weekend when news of the accident circulated. Catherine suffered multiple fractures to her legs and swelling on the brain.
Following her death last Thursday, Billings principal Norm Woods announced that the school was setting up a support system for grieving students. At last Friday’s Bandfest, there was a minute of silence in her memory, which was repeated at the school on Monday. One band dedicated a song to her and spiritual animator Keith McAuliffe said a few words on her behalf.
“Our Leadership class (of which Catherine was a member) is meeting to decide what we can do as a tribute to her,” Woods told Le Soleil on Monday of this week.
“I saw the accident happen and I was in shock,” said one eyewitness who spoke on condition that her name not be used. “Catherine didn’t see the van at all,” the witness noted. “It was travelling in the direction of St-Jean Baptiste Blvd. on D’Anjou, and it was going only about 30 miles an hour when she jumped in front of it. She was with two girlfriends at the time. I was driving out of the IGA parking lot and rushed to her side. “She was hardly breathing and her leg seemed broken in many places. She later went into a coma and I was praying for her.”
Catherine was rushed to Anna Laberge Hospital from where she was transferred to St. Justine’s for more elaborate treatment.
A week ago yesterday, Catherine appeared to be on the road to recovery, but, as it turned out, such was not the case. “She’s doing better today,” said her brother, Dave Horton, at the time. “She’s in stable condition. She’s in an induced coma to calm her body down to relieve the stress. But she does have a broken leg and some swelling in her brain. She had a cat-scan but she’ll be all right,” he said, hopefully.
Chateauguay police spokesperson Nathalie Langevin said that three eyewitnesses saw the girl cross against the red light. “She suffered a fractured leg and coronary trauma. The car was travelling at normal speed and it had the green light,” she said.
A friend of the family said that Catherine had donated her organs and her beautiful, blond hair.
Bob Vesely, Catherine’s dad, is an assistant coach with the Chateauguay Midget Raiders football team. Catherine’s brother Dave is a member of the three-time Manson Cup champion Chateauguay Junior Raiders and her mother, Pat Horton Vesely, is a former vice-president of the Chateauguay Minor Football Association.