Construction flagger dies from injuries

A construction worker hit while flagging traffic near Issaquah in December has died from his injuries.

Cody Meyer, 23, was standing along Cedar Grove Road Southeast on December 15 when he was hit by a Jeep.

The driver of the Jeep told investigators he was checking his phone seconds before the crash; he looked up and Meyer was flagging in front of him.

Meyer had serious head injuries and a broken leg. He spent a month at Harborview Medical Center and spent four more months at a transitional care facility in Seattle.

He was moved to a rehabilitation center in Stanwood this week and died Tuesday night.

"We lost our son to somebody being stupid," his mother, Tina Meyer, told KIRO 7 on Thursday.

And while she is grieving, Tina Meyer is determined to change behavior.

"There's a chance one more person is going to see the story and put their damn phone down."

Meyer graduated from Stanwood High School. He'd worked for Diversified Northwest Inc. for about six months, and previously worked at Fire Mountain Boy Scout Camp for seven years.

His mom said he had a great sense of humor. After the accident he fought to recover for five months. She said he was really making progress.

She visited him every day, including Tuesday, the day she said, “I got my kiss goodbye."

Investigators checked phone records and say the driver wasn't talking on the phone or texting at the time of the crash. The driver told deputies he'd glanced at his phone.

According to court documents a witness saw the driver look down at his phone longer than a glance, and said he was still looking down as he hit Meyer.

The Jeep had front-end damage and a sign Meyer had for his job was left on the side of the road.

The driver of the Jeep had a 1-year-old child in the SUV at the time of the crash.

At the time of the accident, Meyer was flagging for Diversified Northwest Inc. The company was installing fiber optic cable near Issaquah.

His co-workers are devastated.

"We were all pretty positive he was going to come out of this just great,” Hailey Stewart-Moreland said Thursday. “Everyone one of us is blown away and devastated he didn't make it."

She said workers are worried about distracted drivers.

"We're just like everybody else and want to go home at night. It only takes a quick second reaching for a phone and something can happen."

Deputies said there were several orange construction signs warning drivers of road work and the flagger ahead.

Accident investigators from the King County Sheriff's Office took pictures and measurements of the accident scene.

The driver of the Jeep, Andrew Richwine, 33, was charged with vehicular assault.

The Issaquah resident will be arraigned on June 1st, at that time the charges are expected to be amended to vehicular homicide.

Tina Meyer is more interested in change than revenge. She'd like to see the driver talk publicly about what he did. She also said she'd like him to do community service wearing an orange vest picking up garbage along the roadway to see what it is like wondering if a car is going to stop.

Meyer was determined to speak through her tears.




"I know that Cody would want people to know to put down their phones,” his mother said. “He would want me to be strong for him and to make sure the message it put out there."

Cody Meyer’s memorial service will be held at the Fire Mountain Boy Scout camp. The date has not been set.