Man was buying milk when truck crashed into N.S. convenience store
Published Tuesday, February 5, 2019 9:43PM AST
Last Updated Wednesday, February 6, 2019 8:37AM AST
For Michael Bowser, it was a regular outing that turned into a night that would change his life.
Bowser was one of two people injured in a bizarre and horrific series of events last week that ended with a truck crashing into a convenience store in Lower Sackville, N.S.
For those who saw the damage at the Circle K convenience store, it's hard to imagine how anyone in the path of the truck could have survived.
But two people did: Bowser, and the convenience store cashier, who is still in hospital.
They’re both alive, but they’ll never be the same after last Thursday’s incident.
“I have a fractured ankle and foot, a broken jaw, broken nose, my upper lower eye socket is fractured, my cheekbone was fractured too,” Bowser said.
For Bowser, his partner, and their three kids, the evening began like many others.
After going for dinner, they stopped at their neighborhood convenience store, and Bowser went in for a carton of milk.
“I kept thinking you know, he is in there for a couple more minutes,” said Bowser’s partner Erica Davidson.
Bowser said he remembers looking down at the date on the carton to make sure he was getting fresh milk for his family.
“When I looked up, I had heard this 'bang' and as soon as I looked up, the truck was at the window,” Bowser said.
Davidson’s reaction was instantaneous.
“I flew out of the car,” she said. “I fell out and I just screamed Michael's name, and I lost it.”
The driver of the truck, 38-year-old David Raymond Farrell, is now facing 18 charges, including drug-impaired driving, robbery, and assault.
Police say earlier that evening a car was driving down the wrong side of a major highway before it crashed.
Mounties say the driver then carjacked a truck while wielding a machete and drove that truck into the store at the exact moment Bowser was about to buy the carton of milk.
“Lights had fallen, roof had fallen, I was pinned underneath this truck,” Bowser said. “First thing I remember seeing was police officers. All I could say to them was, ‘Can you please tell my family I'm OK.’”
Davidson couldn't see him until two hours later, after firefighters managed to free him and get him to the hospital.
“Excruciating, but they told me he was OK, so, I just held on to that,” Davidson said.
The convenience store has been repaired with a new wall and a new window, and the store opened to customers Monday night. Bowser says he would like to be able to go back and shop there, just like he always did, but he doesn't know when that will be.
Bowser now has three titanium plates in his face. The heavy-equipment operator is off the job on a long road to recovery.
Meanwhile, Bowser and Davidson say they are keeping the employee at the counter in their thoughts.
“It's terrible, it's terrible for Dylan and his family; we feel terrible,” Davidson said.
They are also thankful for many things: that Bowser is alive, that his family stayed in the car, and for all the help and support they've received after their lives changed in an instant.
There is a GoFundMe page to help with Bowser's medical expenses.
And the company that owns Circle K stores will begin taking donations starting Wednesday at three of its locations to help Bowser and their employee. Two of those locations are in Lower Sackville and the other is in Mount Uniacke.
As for Farrell, he is due to appear in court Thursday after undergoing a psychological assessment.
On Tuesday, the RCMP confirmed that Farrell failed a roadside drug test, the Dräger DrugTest 5000, which is an oral swab test which can detect the presence of THC and/or cocaine in saliva.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Heidi Petracek.