GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Two days after his girlfriend was killed in a fiery crash caused by a driver fleeing police, Chad Beisel described how, while he and Tara Oskam drove home via different routes, he came upon the crash scene.
"I prayed it wasn't her," said Chad. "I saw the car."
Chad and Tara had spent an evening at a favorite pursuit: playing in a euchre tournament. His route home was blocked due to the crash in which Tara's car was hit by a suspect being pursued by a Michigan State Police trooper. Chad pulled over and tried to call Tara, he said, but instead received a call from one of Tara's friends who had been on the phone with Tara. She told Chad she suddenly heard a screech on the phone, then nothing.
"It didn't take long to put it together," Chad quietly recalled.
Chad described how the crash not only ended Tara's life but their short life together. They enjoyed a year and a half as a couple, and their life already had a rhythm. Every Sunday after attending church together, the pair would go for a home-cooked meal and card games at the home of Tara's parents.
"I looked forward to that all weekend. Even though she's not here anymore, I plan on doing that with her family."
Chad expressed a desire to someday forgive the driver whose police pursuit killed Tara and a passenger in the fleeing vehicle. "For all intents and purposes, he took my life, too."
But while he acknowledges he must grieve Tara's death, he says, "It's nothing I will ever accept."
Watch more of Chad's memories of Tara below: