Mum’s tribute to bubbly teen Community a huge support
Just over a month ago, on August 2, the lives of Wendy and Crystal Clothier changed forever. Wendy lost a daughter and Crystal lost a sister. The family want to thank the community for their support over this tragic time, so Teresa Hattan sat down with th
There is a saying that no parent should have to bury a child.
A month ago, Matamata mum Wendy Clothier had to do just that.
Her 17- year- old daughter Jasmine was the passenger in a car which collided with an oncoming vehicle on the Kaimai Range.
Wendy and her eldest daughter Crystal spoke with the Matamata Chronicle, wanting to express their love for a lost daughter and sister.
Wendy said she also wanted to set the story straight and to dispel some rumours she was aware of.
A Facebook page, set up to remember Jasmine, has hundreds of messages, photos and videos from friends, family and even those who didn’t know the teenager.
‘‘A lot of them are the same, that she was a bubbly, friendly person. She did love everyone and unfortunately trusted everyone, but she saw the good in everyone. Everyone has said similar things,’’ Wendy said.
As Jasmine’s 18th birthday approaches, Wendy said her daughter had been thinking about what she was going to do next year after school.
She said Jasmine’s interests included photography and ‘‘selfies’’. Her favourite subject at school was media studies.
‘‘It’s something that she loved doing – she didn’t really realise her talents but it was something she had looked at carrying on further.’’ She also had a love of dance. ‘‘ She was a member of the Aspire Dance Academy since it started. She did have a little break from it at the start of this year but she’d just gone back and was getting ready for the end of year show. She loved her dancing and she had a good group of friends there.’’
Next year Jasmine was looking at working for a while and then heading off overseas.
Understandably, the loss of such a bubbly young woman has left a huge hole in the Clothier family.
‘‘It was obviously one of those moments you never want to happen.’’
Wendy said the driver had only been in Matamata a short time and was a new friend of Jasmine’s. She believed he had a full driver’s licence. He has since left town. This has been difficult
for the family to come to terms with.
Wendy said the driver and Jasmine were at the Clothier’s home before setting off for the movies on the day of the accident.
‘‘They left my place with him driving, it was just a Saturday afternoon, they were just going to the movies.
‘‘I assumed they were going to Hamilton, I didn’t realise were going to Tauranga.’’
Jasmine had good friends in Hamilton, so Wendy expected her to go to Hamilton. She had never been to Tauranga before without her family.
Police continue to investigate the accident and it will be some time before it is known if charges
they will be laid against the driver.
Wendy says things will never be the same now, but she and Crystal are keeping each other strong.
Crystal, who was studying in Dunedin, has put her studies on hold and has returned to Matamata.
The family wanted to thank the community for all they have done.
‘‘We’ve been overwhelmed with kindness from everyone. We’ve had so many flowers and cards and I’ve got quite a close support team that have been there 24/7 for me.
‘‘It is nice to be a part of a small town at a time like that,’’ Wendy said.
For those who haven’t experienced the grief of losing a child, it’s hard to offer support.
‘‘There’s not much you can do or say, but there’s been lots of baking.’’
Wendy said her beloved daughter’s farewell, her funeral, was perfect.
‘‘She would’ve loved it. fitting and a celebration life. It was really nice.’’
Jasmine worked part-time at Warehouse Stationery and the company had been ‘‘awesome’’.
Wendy said a customer of Jasmine’s had wanted to do something special to celebrate her life.
Matamata College students helped, but the customer organised, paid for and set up and released 500 purple balloons at the cemetery.
Wendy said it was a fitting tribute for a young girl who would have gone on to do amazing things. It was of her
LOVED: Matamata teenager Jasmine Clothier, 17, is being remembered by her friends and family as a bubbly young woman.