Warning: Harrowing video shows two young men's final moments
This video should never have been recorded let alone seen. It shows the death of two young Englishmen: Michael Owen (21) and Kyle Careford (20). They filmed the video themselves. As distressing as it is, their families subsequently decided to let the video be released to the public in the hopes that others may learn from their sons' tragic mistake.
The two friends were driving in a car together on April 12, 2015: Kyle was at the wheel while Michael filmed with his phone. While the two joked with each other, Michael kept repeating that Kyle should slow down while at the same time telling him to keep going. "We're doing 90, mate!" Those were the last words from the father of a four-year-old daughter. Seconds later, their car plowed through a stone wall and collided with a church.
The phone continued to record after the crash. After a brief silence, someone at the scene can be heard asking, "Can you hear me? Can you hear me?" But Michael and Kyle didn't hear. Both had been killed on impact. Not only had he been speeding through a 30 mph zone at 90 mph, Kyle had also been under the influence of drugs and was driving without a license. He paid for these offenses not with a fine or incarceration, but with his life.
The boys' families were understandably distraught when they learned what had happened. After careful consideration, they decided to release the footage of the accident as a warning.
"I really don't know why the boys chose to do what they did, but I blame them both for the decisions they made on this night," Michael's mother Kat said. "If all this stops one person from making the same mistake, then some good has come from showing this video. I'm hoping it will have an impact on young people and make them see that a bit of fun can have such devastating consequences."
Kyle's brother Zac Hemming further explained the families' reasons for allowing the video to be made public. "Despite the pain of it being broadcast by the media, we as a family just hope and pray that this will connect with at least one person out there, young or old, so that no-one ever has to experience the unthinkable pain of losing someone so close and dearly loved."
You can see the video here. But discretion is advised; it is disturbing.
While nothing can change what happened on that deadly April night, one has to applaud the bravery of Michael and Kyle's families for thinking beyond their own grief and allowing others to benefit from the wisdom of hindsight — hindsight that will sadly never be available to those two boys.