More than anything else, Matthew Colson, seen here with his parents, loved his family. (Kim and Marion Colson)

More than anything else, Matthew Colson, seen here with his parents, loved his family. (Kim and Marion Colson)

Walking ‘miracle’ killed in unsolved Marysville hit-and-run

Matthew Colson, 24, loved fishing, deadpan jokes and skateboarding. He died at the hospital.

MARYSVILLE — Almost three weeks after their 24-year-old son was struck and killed by an SUV in Marysville, Kim and Marion Colson have no answers.

Matthew Colson was walking across 64th Street NE, near 58th Drive NE, when he was hit Feb. 16. The driver didn’t stay at the scene.

“We’re still numb,” Marion Colson said.

When the young man’s parents got to their home in Marysville that night, a police officer was waiting for them. There had been an accident, he said. “It doesn’t look good.” Their son was taken to the hospital, where he later died.

Matthew Colson survived a major skateboarding accident when he was 11. The incident left him with severe brain damage, but he made a “miraculous” recovery and eventually could walk around on his own. (Kim and Marion Colson)

Matthew Colson survived a major skateboarding accident when he was 11. The incident left him with severe brain damage, but he made a “miraculous” recovery and eventually could walk around on his own. (Kim and Marion Colson)

It didn’t make sense, Marion Colson said. His son couldn’t drive for medical reasons, so he walked all over town. He always looked both ways before crossing the street.

Marysville police are investigating the case as a vehicular homicide. They haven’t found a suspect, but on Friday announced they had identified and questioned new potential witnesses.

His parents hope the driver comes forward. Someone unfurled a banner near the scene of the crash, saying “Justice for Matthew Colson.”

Kim and Marion Colson almost lost their son once before. When he was 11, he got into an accident while skateboarding in Arlington, causing severe brain trauma that would affect him the rest of his life.

Doctors at Harborview Medical Center said he had about a 5 percent chance of surviving surgery, Marion Colson said. If he did make it, he would be comatose. Part of his skull was removed during the operation to allow his brain to swell.

His recovery was long but “miraculous.”

As a child, Matthew Colson loved skateboarding, movies and making deadpan jokes. (Kim and Marion Colson)

As a child, Matthew Colson loved skateboarding, movies and making deadpan jokes. (Kim and Marion Colson)

It started with the slightest thumb movement. A nurse said it was probably just a reflex, “but I was watching it pretty close,” Marion Colson recalled.

Later, Matthew Colson moved his head to rest on his hand, just like he had done so many times while sleeping as a child. Kim Colson said that’s when she knew he would improve.

The nurses thought Matthew Colson would have to go to a youth nursing home. His quick recovery changed their minds.

The boy spent two months at Seattle Children’s Hospital, and then another 2½ years in physical rehabilitation. He went from using a wheelchair to walking on his own.

He retained his sense of humor through it all. It was dry, his parents said, but his punch lines were perfectly timed. One of his favorite gags was the “Saturday Night Live” skit “Night at the Roxbury.” Like the characters, he and his brother would often bob their heads in unison.

Matthew Colson was more concerned about others than himself. When his mother got sick, he would warm up some blankets and make her tea. He rushed to help neighbors with groceries. And he always lent an ear to his friends.

Matthew Colson could often be found fishing with his father. He was struck by an SUV while crossing a street in Marysville on Feb. 16. (Kim and Marion Colson)

Matthew Colson could often be found fishing with his father. He was struck by an SUV while crossing a street in Marysville on Feb. 16. (Kim and Marion Colson)

He loved his family more than anything. He watched movies and talked about skateboarding with his brother, and did arts and crafts with his sisters.

“He was my fishing buddy,” Marion Colson said.

Just before Matthew Colson died, he was going to school for aerospace manufacturing. He had just received a scholarship and a job with Bridgeways assembling plane parts. His work badge didn’t have his photo on it yet.

A funeral was held last Saturday. Matthew Colson was dressed in all white — including the skater shoes — and was laid to rest in a white casket.

“Up there got a great soul,” Kim Colson said, pointing toward the sky. “Down here?”

“We’re missing him,” Marion Colson said.

Tips can be directed to 360-363-8300.

Zachariah Bryan: 425-339-3431; zbryan@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @zachariahtb.

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