Woodmore mother remains positive on 3rd anniversary of bus crash
On this day, three years ago six Woodmore Elementary School students were killed and dozens of others were hurt in a bus crash on Talley Road.
The bus driver, Johnthony Walker, is serving four years in prison for causing the 2016 crash.
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But on this difficult day, the mother of Zoie Nash, a 4th grader killed in the crash, says she’s trying to stay positive.
Nash attended her college orientation on Thursday, choosing to schedule it on this day to help her focus the positive despite the loss she experienced three years ago.
Zoie was a natural athlete. She played softball, basketball and was a dancer.
Her brother Zechariah was on board Bus 366 too. He was hurt severely hurt in the crash.
"It's been a while since I seen Zachariah play and talk about football but when I started talking to my new friend, my boyfriend, he's a very nice guy. Very nice guy,” Nash said.
Misti said he is doing a lot better. He’s playing baseball and football and despite his scars, he’s starting to act like himself. But for Misti...
"To be honest with you, I'm just now grieving about it,” she said, "I didn't only grieve my daughter, I grieved all six of them kids on that bus."
A lot has changed for all of the families with children on Bus 366.
But for Misti, there’s one thing that hasn’t changed.
"My feelings towards Johnthony Walker is the same, I do not think that he meant to hurt them kids. That's my opinion, I can't speak for nobody else,” she said.
Walker was behind the wheel of the bus when it crashed.
He was convicted of lesser charges and sentenced to four years in prison.
At his sentencing, he addressed the court through tears.
"I just want to apologize for taking the lights out of you alls lives and how it has impacted everybody,” Walker said.
Earlier this year, a state appellate court denied Walker’s appeal for a lighter sentence and Walker was sent to a west Tennessee prison.
Everyone was shocked when Walker was arrested for aggravated statutory rape while out on bond during his appeal.
Misti said she often thinks about the family at the center of that case.
"I hate what happened to that young lady, I do. And he deserves whatever he gets for that situation,” she added.
Despite the loss she experienced on this day three years ago, she’s choosing to focus on the positive and remember Zoie.
"It's like having my kids back again from when my daughter died. And I owe that to [my boyfriend] and I owe that to God and to a lot of other people,” she said.
Walker is expected to appear in a Nashville courtroom on the statutory rape case on December 5.