Teenage boy dies just days after his birthday after jumping in front of car to save sister
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A 13-year-old boy has been hailed 'a hero' after saving his sister's life in a hit-and-run.
On Wednesday 12 October, 13-year-old Tyler Phillips and his sister, Krystal Randolph, also 13, were walking home from Gordon Heights Children's Park in Coram, Long Island, New York.
At around 7:30pm, when the pair were on Granny Road walking in a bike lane, a car approached the children from behind and ran into them, police report.
Despite it being dark by 7:30pm, Krystal told NBC 4 the car that approached her and her brother from behind had no lights.
The incident was witnessed by family friend Steffani Campbell.
She recalled: "The car hit her (Krystal) first and I guess he (Tyler) went to jump and grab her, and it just took him.
"She said she watched him fly to the middle of the street and she called an ambulance. They told her to give him CPR and that was it."
The children were rushed to Stony Brook University Hospital.
Krystal reportedly sustained a sprained armed, however Tyler's injuries were much more serious.
Mum Desari Mack explained: "They tried to resuscitate him in the ambulance. They took him to Stony Brook Hospital, but his vertebrae and skull got separated.
"He has no brain function, he’s gone."
The SUV - reportedly a dark-coloured Chevrolet Equinox - is said to have immediately taken off after hitting the two children, not stopping to check if they were okay.
Deputy inspector David Doherty stated: "We expect the vehicle involved to have front and/or side-passenger damage. We are currently canvassing the area for witnesses and video."
A $5,000 cash reward is now being offered to anyone with any information on the car which could lead to the arrest of the driver.
A GoFundMe page has since been set up to help fund Tyler's funeral costs.
Organised by the 13-year-old's aunt, it reads: "My nephew was Outgoing, Adventurous, Fiesty yet kind, he loved with his whole heart for the ones he cared for , he was humorous, athletic etc. Tyler was an amazing kid! He is a hero because he saved his sister from being hit by that car.
"His mother is low on funds so she don't have enough to pay for funeral expenses and burial let alone a headstone. My nephew Tyler deserves to be laid to rest with a proper farewell. We are all sadden by this sudden lost . If anyone can please donate to help out the family we would all appreciate it!"
Today, (Friday, 21 October) a candlelit vigil is also being held at Granny Park to remember Tyler.
Krystal told outlets her brother 'saved [her] life', with the pair's mother adding: "He was a hero, he will always be a hero."
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Suffolk County Police Department's Major Case Unit detectives at 631-852-6555 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence, contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677
Featured Image Credit: Facebook/NBC New York
Topics: US News, Crime, True Crime