Victim’s mother thanks community for support

LIHUE — The mother of Michael Kocher, the 19-year-old Hanapepe man who was killed while walking on a Westside highway Jan. 2, has reached out to thank the community for its strong support since the tragic accident.

“Mahalo, mahalo, mahalo for the steady stream of love and support coming from our ohana, friends, neighbors and community here on Kauai and from our ohana, friends, neighbors and community in Hiwassee Dam, North Carolina,” Patricia Kocher, emailed The Garden Island, on behalf of herself and spouse Michael Kocher Sr. “And, from people that knew our son. And from people we didn’t even know, who care and are showing God’s love and compassion.”

Patricia declined to talk more about the accident and how the family is dealing with the loss, but said she wanted only what their son would want in this difficult situation — respect.

“We thank God for our son Michael,” Patricia added. “He was an incredible blessing to many lives.”

Kocher was walking on Kaumualii Highway around 9:35 p.m., when he was struck by an eastbound Toyota Corolla, and then again by a responding police vehicle just east of the Kaumakani Post Office.

The crash remains under investigation. The results of an autopsy have yet to be released.

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