Federal Way—In his home overlooking Puget Sound in Federal Way, Randall King walks us through his kitchen, showing us the pots and pans and knife set his son used to cook. Cooking was Derek's passion. He won a culinary competition just a week before he was killed.
"There's just a void in your heart and in your mind. I still can't even go into my son's room. I can't even touch his phone. I'm trying to get pictures off his phone and I can't even do that," says Randall.
What Randall King has been able to do is face Alexander Peder in court. He is the accused drunk driver who slammed into the car Derek was riding in on I-5 on June 9th. Derek and his friend Nick Hodgins were killed in the crash. The driver, Anthony Beaver, survived.
"It's really hard to see him. It's really hard to face the person that killed your son," says Randall.
A focus for Randall King now is fighting to toughen DUI laws and prosecution in our state. He is also upset that the state's wrongful death statute doesn't apply to his son because Derek was 18 years-old, so King says Peder does not have to pay monetary damages to his parents.
"They're telling me he'll probably get off with four to seven years for killing two teenagers which is just astounding," says King. "We can't even drive past that spot. I have a hotel in Bellevue and if I go I have to get off I-5 and take the side streets and get back on I-5 to get home. I can't do it and Anthony who survived the crash he can't either."
It's also hard for Randall, his wife and older son to enjoy the summer together. So many things bring back a flood of memories. Like recently when they went out on their boat. Derek loved being on the water and wake boarding in particular.
"That was a trigger, crabbing and fishing is a trigger. Cooking, I have a hard time cooking now and that's because he and I cooked together a lot," says King.
That's what Derek would be doing right now if he were alive. He was supposed to go to Chicago on June 20th to cook at a restaurant in Chicago. His dad can only hope in some way, his son is still doing what he loves.
"I want him home but I know he's up there cooking with God so it has to be a better place."
Randall King has started a culinary scholarship in his son's name. The driver of the car, Anthony Beaver, was also a culinary student with Derek. Randall says he actually gave him a job cooking at a restaurant at one of the hotels he manages in SeaTac.
Tuesday on Q13 FOX News at 10 watch Randall King's emotional interview and hear how he is working right now to strengthen DUI laws in Washington.