It’s been a long road for the Meissinger family, who are hoping their 26-month-long nightmare is now coming to an end.
Their son Travis was killed in January 2011, when the driver of the car he was in lost control and crashed into several parked cars along Dover Ridge Drive in the southeast.
The man behind the wheel, Chris Fitzsimmons, was charged with impaired driving and dangerous driving causing death.
His trial begins Monday.
Travis’ parents, Dana and Ken, say they’ve been left with more questions than answers throughout the ordeal.
Dana wonders where exactly the justice is for her family, after being forced to wait this long for a court date.
The grieving mother tells 660News it can often seem like lesser offences are dealt with more severely, and in a quicker time frame.
Meissinger says it’s the worst type of thing a parent can endure, and believes it’s something she’ll truly never get over.
“It’s the cops showing up at your house at 3:30 in the morning, ringing the door bell, so from that day on you don’t sleep,” she says. “He was my baby and I only have one other son. We were a family that was very close to each other.”
She says the waiting and wondering has been tough on all of them, particularly the more elderly family members.
“On top of grieving, we’ve had to continuously provide information over and over again when talking to authorities regarding Travis and his death. Each time is like we are on instant replay of that horrifying morning,” she says.
“And in our circumstances, we worked with our son, we cannot escape from going home or going to work,” Travis’ mom explains.
The Meissingers own a family business just up the road from where the fatal car crash took place.
She says families like theirs need time to grieve and to heal, which is impossible as long as there are impending charges and court dates.
Another struggle she has had to deal with is the driver believed to be responsible, Chris Fitzsimmons, has been out and free to live his life while awaiting trial.
The whole thing has been tough on her older son.
“That was his best friend, they were 16 months apart. He worked out of town all of the time, now he can’t do that, he can’t leave us because he’s so scared,” she says.
Fitzsimmons’ trial is expected to last five days.
The Meissingers say they plan to be there, along with Travis’ friends, until the verdict is read.