ACT News


Warm memories of a life cut short

Friends have fondly remembered the smile and laughter of a much-loved man tragically killed in front of his sister in Campbell on Saturday morning.

Benjamin Tonkin-Smith died when he was struck by a reversing car, which was allegedly fleeing an altercation soon after midnight.

Police were called to a Campbell home on Saturday morning when an argument resulted in Emma Thost-Hedge, 21, allegedly hitting a parked blue Mitsubishi.

Mr Tonkin-Smith was struck as the car's driver, who reversed quickly out of the driveway, attempted to escape.

Paramedics rushed the 20-year-old to Canberra Hospital where he was pronounced dead by hospital staff soon after arrival. Police investigations continued on Sunday. It is understood no charges have been laid against the driver.

Ms Thost-Hedge was charged with property damage and was bailed by the ACT Magistrates Court on Saturday morning. It is believed she is in a relationship with the victim's sister, Courtney Tonkin-Smith, while the driver is Ms Tonkin-Smith's ex-boyfriend. Ms Tonkin-Smith was present during the incident.


Family and friends took to Facebook over the weekend to pay tribute to a life cut short.

Mr Tonkin-Smith's father, Malcolm Tonkin, on Sunday wrote of his anguish at the loss.

''Well, Bj. It's been just over 24 hrs since you left us, missing you like mad and wishing you were still here. Love you son, that will never change, just wish you were still here with us. You never got to become a parent, s---, you only just got your full licence,'' he wrote. ''R.I.P. mate, we will love and miss you forever until we meet again. Love you son.''

His sister also posted a heartfelt message to her brother.

''I'm sorry things went this way but u did not deserve this we may have had our fights but we still came through I can't believe this has happened I love u brother there is not a day that I'm not going to forget this love you and miss u already.''

A Facebook page created in his honour had attracted more than 460 followers on Sunday, with friends posting messages and pictures of remembrance.

One user posted: ''You are by far the best thing god ever put breath into, it just sucks that he's also the one that can take it away as quickly as he gave it to you. You had the best personality, smile, laugh, just everything about you everyone loved!'' Another said: ''The many memories we made, will never will be forgotten. FOREVER YOUNG brother from another mother. RIP Benny Boy!!!!''