Pat Ward was dreading a whole summer without her 18-year-old son, David.
He was planning to work on a farm in Melba, Idaho, owned by his brother Doug, after graduating next month from Freeman High School.
But a vehicle accident took the Freeman senior’s life last week.
Last Wednesday, David L. Ward was thrown from the bed of a 1993 Toyota pickup that crashed into a pole at state Highway 27 and Jackson Road.
The 1:43 p.m. accident left driver Lecia D. Rasmussen and passenger Heather R. Evers, both 17-year-old girls of Spokane, injured.
Ward was buried at Pines Cemetery on Monday.
Although the track athlete’s absence leaves a hole in his family of six children, recalling his memories brings smiles to his mother’s face.
Born in Redlands, Calif., Ward and his family moved to the Spokane area 10 years ago.
Pat Ward said she knew what to expect for parent-teacher conferences.
“All of the teachers said, ‘It’s so good to have your son as a student - he does what he’s supposed to.”
David had delivered newspapers and recently worked in the electronics department at Shopko.
He was also involved in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Spokane 5th and 12th Wards.
“So much of what he did, he did for his family,” Ward said.
“He was always very organized,” she said. He displayed his award certificates and a collection of Far Side cartoons neatly in his bedroom.
A good babysitter and cook, he also enjoyed playing excerpts from “Phantom of the Opera” on the piano.
“He loved to work outside,” she said.
He also played outside: hiking, biking and camping with friends and the Boy Scouts.
Scott Bond, a Central Valley High School senior, knew David for several years.
“I liked his determination and his hard-working attitude,” Bond said.
At Freeman High, Ward was involved in the yearbook staff, choir and ran track and cross country.
His best event, said father Larry Ward, was the 440.
Pat Ward said he was accepted at Arizona State University, but also was considering attending community college before going there.
Dreams of studying law changed into hopes of becoming an architect, Ward said.
One of his longtime hobbies was making pencil sketches, she said. “He would draw roads with bridges.”
“We know that David is OK,” she said, referring to their faith. “It’s just the loss you feel because he was my right-hand person. I depended on him so much.”
“We were certainly privileged to be his parents,” she said. “He was a good kid.”