Community rallies to help family after man killed in crash caused by Tesla on autopilot

SNOHOMISH, Wash. — It’s been a month since Jeffery Nissan was killed in a fatal crash on SR 522 in Monroe caused by a Tesla that was on autopilot. The driver of the Tesla, Carl Hunter, was arrested and charged with vehicular manslaughter.

“And to hear he had plans. He had a vision. They had a dream together…t’s not there anymore,” Jim Kessler, brother-in-law of Nissan’s fiancée, said.

Kessler, along with many people in Snohomish County, says this tragedy has had a profound impact on everyone.

“There’s no way to really plan for something like this,” Kessler said.

Especially those within the motorcycle community like Troy Lynn.

“For me, it had a lasting effect, and it took me about a week to realize that I had a connection to the family,” Lynn said.

But through the midst of tragedy, family and friends of Nissan decided to come together to not only help his family but heal as a community.

“What can do in any way, shape or form trying to support somebody that is going through a real tragic loss?” Kessler said.

A large group of people gathered at Haywire Brewery in Snohomish Sunday afternoon where a fundraiser was put together to help ease the financial stress for the family. There was a silent auction, a community raffle for prizes, as well as the brewery donating $1 per beer.

“I don’t care if you spend a dollar or don’t spend a dollar. Just be here to place your hand on somebody and really help them,” Kessler said.

But if you talked to anyone at this fundraiser, they would tell you it wasn’t just about the money. It was about a community coming together for a family and each other.

“And so, we thought we should take the opportunity to let everybody get together and heal,” Lynn said.

Because many in Snohomish would argue the best way to heal is by being together.

“Maybe it’s something in the short term. Maybe it’s long term. It’s all healing of the heart,” Kessler said.

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