Cars lethal weapons:  grieving dad

"When you step into a car, it is a lethal weapon and it is a big responsibility that you take and I would like for people not to take that responsibility lightly."

Scott Ballantyne said his family would never stop hurting over the death of his 20-year-old son Andrew.

In the wake of his son's death last month, Mr Ballantyne has urged drivers to think of their responsibilities.

"It is not a right to have a car licence, it's a responsibility and a privilege and I think it needs to be treated that way," he said.

Andrew Ballantyne died on January 18 when his Nissan Patrol and a loader-tractor collided in Wagin.

Since his death, another 15 people have died on the State's roads.

Last Friday, 1200 people gathered to remember a man who captured every heart he met.

In his 20 years, he fitted in what most would struggle to do in 40, Mr Ballantyne said.

"He was a young man who has taught us all how to live. He has a heart as big as they come," he said.

The Ballantynes have had some tough moments since Andrew died.

"We get a choice to either cope or fold and we have to choose to cope with it, that's how we go. We do what we need to do each day and surround ourselves with as many friends as we can, and away we go from there," Mr Ballantyne said.

"You sort of by choice isolate yourself. It becomes the centre of your world for a while."

Mr Ballantyne said the crash on Tonkin Highway on Sunday night which killed a young mother was the first his family had been aware of since their son's death.

"When you get in that position, we didn't see news or papers until after a week. We didn't worry, we didn't care," he said.

Mr Ballantyne said the last time he saw his son, he was "smiling and laughing".

The family count themselves lucky their last memories of Andrew were happy ones.

"He was quite a confident, assured, competent, caring, kind young man," Mr Ballantyne said.

"He lived flat-out. He makes us so proud, he's going to be missed like you wouldn't believe.

"You just have to be aware of what people are doing on the roads. You just need to pay attention."

'He's going to be missed like you wouldn't believe.'"Andrew's father


  • Scott Ballantyne *

The West Australian

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