Mother grieves as police seek to link son's death to Meiser

Mother grieves as police seek to link son's death to Meiser »Play Video
Nick Fickett. (Family photo)

KELSO, Wash. – At a neighborhood bar Wednesday night Ginger Conant was decked out in costume for Halloween in honor of her son Nick Fickett.

Halloween was her son's favorite holiday. And on a day the 28-year-old loved so much, Conant now only has memories of their years together.

"Every time I went on a road trip, he went with me," she said.

Loved ones gathered with Conant to remember and honor Fickett who was killed three months ago. They've learned police may have a suspect in his violent death. Law enforcement sources believe her son could have been killed by 37-year-old Erik J. Meiser, the same man accused in the murder of a Lake Oswego husband, 57-year-old Frederick "Fritz" Hayes.

Meiser is charged with stabbing Hayes to death in front of his wife in September.

The Cowlitz County Sheriff's Office released a statement late Wednesday night saying it has information that Meiser was in Kelso when Fickett was murdered. But deputies did not say much more than that.

At Wednesday night's vigil, photos were spread out on a table as well as the last Mother's Day card Conant will ever get from her son.

"I feel lost," Conant said. "It's really hard. I usually have two to three hours of crying every single day."

Fickett was camping on the east bank of the Cowlitz River in July when he was stabbed multiple times.

"He liked to camp out," said Conant. "Last summer that's all he did. You couldn't find him inside a house or apartment or anything."

Sources tell KATU News they are now looking at Meiser in Fickett's death.

Conant said she doesn't know Meiser.

"I just know whoever did it did the wrong thing, because Nick was too good of a person, too kind hearted," she said.

A big heart and a big smile was what friends talked about as they lit candles for Fickett on his favorite day. His mother said that even if someone is held accountable for her son's murder, it won't take the pain away.

"It can't bring my kid back," she said.

Meiser has not been charged in Fickett's murder. Investigators said they want to speak to anyone who had contact with Meiser in Kelso, especially if it was in late July.