Mother's plea after handicapped son is killed by hit-and-run driver

Austin Police are trying to track down the driver who hit and killed 45-year-old Mark Morales in East Austin on Halloween night.

AUSTIN - A mother is in mourning after a driver hit and killed her son in East Austin on Halloween night.

It happened just after 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday near Chicon and East Cesar Chavez streets.

Mark Morales, 45, was at home passing out Halloween candy while his mother, Mary Jane Rivera, was at work.

He called her asking for a sandwich, and she was on her way home with food for him when she noticed something happening just down her street.

She passed by, not knowing it was her son that was lying on the ground.

"It never occurred to me that it was my son. It never occurred to me that it was Mark,” said Rivera, crying as she recalled the moments she learned it was her son.

Police said Mark died instantly.

Mark was badly injured in a car accident years ago and was left “85 percent handicapped,” according to his family. He wasn’t able to drive, but he did walk to the corner store up the street several times a day.

He was on his way back from the corner store when he was hit by that driver. The driver fled the scene, leaving Mark alone on the street.

"He flew 30 feet,” said Mark’s niece.

"They just didn't stop, they just kept on going. All I want is closure, for me and my family,” said Rivera.

The family is hoping the driver comes forward.

In the meantime, they are also urging drivers in that area to slow down. They’ve lived in that house for 50 years and tell KVUE it’s gotten increasingly more dangerous.

"I don't want to live here anymore, in the neighborhood. I don’t want to live here without him,” Rivera said.
"My son was a human being and he should have been respected."

To help Rivera and her family pay for Mark’s funeral, they have started a GoFundMe. You can donate here.

Visitation will begin at 5 p.m. Tuesday at Mission Funeral Home - East Side. More information on services can be found here.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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