HENDERSON, Ky (WEHT)– It’s been five days since a car accident claimed the lives of two adults, one child, and two dogs. One man lost everyone in his entire household in that crash on the Audubon Parkway in Henderson.
Stephen Schaefer, the husband of 24-year-old Braelen Schaefer and the father of one-year-old Weston Schaefer, also had two corgi dogs who died in the accident. During this time of mourning, Schaefer said he is reflecting on the memories he made with his family.
“I don’t get to wake up in the morning to see his [Weston] little smiling face and I don’t have to shake the wife and say, ‘Wake up babe it’s time for work,’” said Shaefer. “She was an amazing mom she was my best friend, my confidante, my drinking buddy and I’m going to make her proud. I’m going to keep kicking butt, I’m going to keep the business going. And Weston I’d tell him to be good, but he was always good. I’d want him to know how much his papa loves him and I’m just so happy I’ve got them looking out for me now.”
Braelen was driving their 1-year-old son Weston and their two dogs home when they were in a car accident. The passenger in the other car, 62-year-old Vickie Reutter passed away. Then Braelen died after being life flighted and little Weston passed away over the weekend after being transported to a hospital in Louisville.
“Everybody that I’ve talked to, ‘There’s just no words. I couldn’t imagine.’ and I’m like ‘Neither could I,” Shaefer said it all happened within a day, but it felt much longer. “Braelen not being there in that moment was terrible because who do you turn to in these sad moments. You’re worried. You’re concerned. You turn to your significant other and she’s gone.”
Shaefer said brain injuries and bleeding on the brain ultimately claimed Weston’s life, but workers at the hospital couldn’t help but notice how healthy Weston was.
“He had passed, but to sit there and him say he’s got a beautiful heartbeat, he’s got beautiful lungs, his kidneys, his blood levels. He’s O positive,” Shaefer said this is when he knew he had to sign his son up as an organ donor. “I felt this like– almost like weston was like, ‘Dad this is it. This is what I want to do.’”
So far, Weston has saved 37 lives. Now Schaefer is starting an organization called Weston’s Warriors which spreads awareness of the need for organ donors.
The public is invited to Weston and Braelen’s celebration of life Sunday starting at noon at KC’s Marina Pointe.
Shaefer said his heart goes out to the Reutter’s family who is also mourning a loss after this accident