LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)– The killer of 21-year-old, UL Lafayette student Mickey Shunick will stay behind bars. This comes after the Louisiana Supreme Court denied Brandon Lavergne’s request for another appeal.
The decision came one day before the 6th Annual Mickey Shunick Memorial Loop Ride in Moncus Park.
“I guess he got what he deserved, although he’s still alive and she’s not,” Tom Shunick, Mickey Shunick’s father, said.
He remembered the night his daughter went missing in 2012.
“Well, it’s been 11 years now,” Tom told News 10. “The day before she turned 22 was when she was taken.”
Mickey Shunick was riding her bike home but never made it.
“The way the city came out behind us, it was amazing how many people were searching for her, the whole city, actually the whole country,” her father added.
Many at the memorial ride said they were living in Lafayette when she disappeared.
“At the same time we lost Mickey, I was also myself a regular cyclist, a student at UL, and lived nearby where she was taken,” Matthew Hollard, who now serves as Bike Lafayette’s advocacy chair, said.
“I mean it impacted everyone,” biker and volunteer Carlee Alm’ABar said. “Everyone was doing what they could to get the word out about her absence, and then when it was found she lost her life and was murdered. That was something that everyone really mourned.”
Brandon Lavergne later confessed to Mickey’s murder in 2012 and led police to her body. He’s now living out the rest of his life in Angola.
Meanwhile, the Lafayette biking community continues to honor Mickey’s life with the annual ride.
“The fact that it’s still going, it’s not just about her now. There’s a lot of other kids that have been hit while riding bikes,” Tom Shunick said. “After the first ride, we went to Corner Bar afterwards. We were sitting with some people and talking, and they were saying how sorry they were and everything like that. The next ride, their son was hit and killed by a motorist.”
The memorial ride now serves to now only celebrate Mickey’s life but to raise awareness for the need for cyclist safety and infrastructure in Lafayette.
“Just hopefully it gets the point across a little bit, and nobody will have been hit and killed by a motorist riding a bike in a year from now,” he added.
The Mickey Shunick Memorial Loop is an eight-mile bike path that leads bikers through UL Lafayette’s campus and other parts of Lafayette. It’s the first fully connected bike path in the city, and bikers said they hope it won’t be the last.