Tyler Smedley was travelling home from work and less than a mile from his home when he lost control of his vehicle, striking a pole and then two trees. Tyler died in the crash. He was videotaping a selfie on his phone at the time of the impact.
Tyler grew up in California and moved to Seattle so that he could be closer to his 4 year-old twin sons, Danny and Charlie. He was an “awesome dad” who loved his boys very much and whose happiness was all that mattered to him.
Tyler never complained about anything or anyone, could always see the good in people and was very generous with a “heart of gold.” He would “give you the shirt off his back,” said his mother, Denise Hoole. Tyler had a great sense of humor and a knack for making people smile or laugh when they were down.
Tyler received his GED and then graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Seattle, Washington after completing an internship in Vail. Colorado. He loved cooking and enjoyed “whipping up the best meal for anyone who would come over to his house,” said his godmother, Joanne Higgins. He was working at Hawk’s Prairie Restaurant in Seattle at the time of his death.
Tyler enjoyed paintball and had a tremendous love for the outdoors. He loved the ocean, swimming, camping and hiking and was scheduled to make a four month hike of the Pacific Crest Trail in April.
Tyler is still helping others even after his death. Tyler’s corneas were donated enabling two gentlemen to now see again. He also helped additional people through the donation of skin and bone tissue and bone marrow.
Tyler is survived by his 4 year-old twin sons, his parents, Denise Hoole and William Smedley Jr, stepfather, Jamie English and godmother, Joanne Higgins. Tyler also leaves behind two sisters, two brothers and many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.
Tyler’s mother has become an advocate in the fight to end cell phone use while driving and has been interviewed on local TV news stations and by newspapers since Tyler’s death. She has started a Facebook page, ” Loved One’s Against Texting and Driving” in the hope that by telling Tyler’s story, other lives will be saved.
View the TV news piece, “ Family: Video selfie caused fatal Thurston County crash.”