Friends remember woman hit and killed in Pender County

Courtney Kirkham, Pender County woman hit and killed by a Pender County Sheriff's Office Deputy...
Courtney Kirkham, Pender County woman hit and killed by a Pender County Sheriff's Office Deputy early Sunday morning.(
Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 11:37 PM EDT
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WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Courtney Kirkham, 28, was hit and killed by a Pender County Sheriff’s Deputy when she was walking along U.S. 17 near Union Bethel Road early Sunday morning.

Many of Kirkham’s friends are in shock about the unexpected loss — they’re still trying to process the fact that she’s gone.

“It’s heartbreaking,” said Brandy Hatcher, a former co-worker and friend of Kirkham. “My immediate reaction was just absolute shock mainly because the life she lived —she deserved nothing short of fairytales and the perfect ending to the story. This isn’t how her story should’ve ended. To hear that it was Courtney was just unreal to me, to know that somebody that I’ve spent countless hours with is gone now in the blink of an eye.”

Hatcher worked with Kirkham for the past two years, but says she was more than a co-worker. “She really just put being a friend first; she showed me her character beyond what I ever expected of her when I needed a friend the most,” Hatcher said. “She would always go the extra mile. Anything good that could happen to someone in this world, she deserved it, she was worthy of it.”

Kirkham was a successful student at Cape Fear Community College. Friends say that she thrived while she was in school at CFCC a few years ago. “She worked hard, she played hard, and she loved hard,” Hatcher said.

Some of those people she loved included her young son who she now leaves behind.

Hatcher also added that Kirkham was always involved in something, whether it was at school or volunteering outside of that. “She loved to volunteer. If I had any opportunity to volunteer for anything she was always in, she volunteered with me on a few Children’s Miracle Network fundraisers.”

“The kind of person she was . . . just . . . it’s hard to put into words, and it almost sounds like make-believe when you’re trying to describe her because she was just such a light in the world; it’s a little bit darker knowing that she’s out of it right now,” Hatcher said. “She had no shortage of confidence and happiness. She wouldn’t want anyone to be sad over her loss, she wouldn’t want people — take it and grow from it.”

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