Numerous bouquets and candles have been left at the site along the Lougheed Highway. (Neil Corbett/THE NEWS)

Roadside shrine to Maple Ridge mother killed in hit-and-run

Boyfriend found her after she was hit

A roadside memorial has sprung up on the Lougheed Highway where a Maple Ridge mother was killed in a hit-and-run, and Saturday morning her boyfriend was there arranging the bouquets of flowers.

Tassis Vix, 31 or 32, was struck and killed by a vehicle travelling west on the highway late Thursday.

Steven Kaplanchuk, with Vix’s dog, was telling three ladies who came to see the roadside shrine how he found her that night.

Vix had left his house, right across Lougheed Highway from the shrine, to go to the store. Kaplanchuk heard a loud bang shortly after. It sounded like a car accident, and he ran outside and across the street.

He saw her laying beside the road.

His sister called 911.

Vix was hit in the 21800-block of Lougheed Highway at approximately 9:55 p.m. Police are still looking for witnesses who were in the area at that time.

Kaplanchuk said he was glad police located a suspect vehicle, late Friday.

He said Vix, whom he had been involved with for about five months, had been staying at his house, and left that night to go to the store.

“I just want whoever did it to know he did the worst thing you could ever do, to kill a young, innocent woman,” he said.

Vix worked as a veterinary assistant at Haney Animal Hospital for 15 years and leaves behind a 10-year-old daughter.

“She was a gorgeous, smart, intelligent lady who loved her kid,” Kaplanchuk said of Vix.

“She was a tremendous, great woman. I don’t know how someone could do that to her.”

Police said the vehicle that struck her did not remain in the area and that Vix died at the scene.

Three years ago, in April 2015, a pedestrian was hit and killed in the 21700-block of Lougheed.

In June 2013, a 17-year-old was hit by an eastbound RCMP cruiser around 12:30 a.m., while crossing Lougheed Highway, just east of 216th Street. He was seriously injured in the crash. The police car did not have its lights and sirens activated at the time of the accident.

In April 2012, a teen was hit while walking across Lougheed Highway. The 14-year-boy was crossing the highway, near 210th Street, when he was struck by an eastbound pickup truck.

In 2010, two pedestrians were killed in two separate accidents on the same stretch.

• Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call Ridge Meadows RCMP at 604-463-6251. To remain anonymous, call CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or leave a tip online at solvecrime.ca. CrimeStoppers may pay a reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction.

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Police closed that section of the highway while they investigated on Friday, and on Saturday morning announced they had located a suspect vehicle. (Shane MacKichan photo)

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