News

Memorial June 9, 1 p.m., at San Juan County Park for man killed in Memorial Day crash

A memorial is scheduled June 9, 1 p.m., at San Juan County Park on San Juan Island for John W. Parish, who died May 31 in a single-car crash near Cattle Point Road and Madden Lane.

Dana Kempton, who the Sheriff's Department believes was the driver, was treated at Harborview Medical Center and released. The crash is under investigation. Sheriff Bill Cumming said vehicle speed and alcohol are believed to have been factors.

Local singer/songwriter Britt K. Arnesen has recorded a song, "Memorial Day on Cattle Point Road," about the fatal crash and its impact on the community and on the Kempton and Parish families.

In her accompanying blog, she writes of her encounters with the man she nicknamed "John Banjo."

"At first I thought it would be best to keep this song to myself, that I could best honor the families involved by staying out of it. But this is life or death," she writes. "I won’t sit back while young people in my generation make choices to throw their lives away. I don’t have an answer except to try to speak my heart in song. It’s what I do. I know John Banjo would have appreciated being eulogized in song, and would have wanted his life to stand for something. I would hope some day that one of my songs could help a young person make the right choice."

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Dec 17
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates