Candlelight Vigil Planned For 7-Year-Old Run Over At Strip Mall
LAKE WORTH (CBS 11 News) – A candlelight vigil is scheduled Tuesday night for a 7-year-old girl who was killed in a crash outside a busy Lake Worth shopping center on Saturday.
A memorial for Savannah Deegear continued to grow at the crash site in the parking lot of an area Target store. Dozens of residents, crash witnesses, friends and family of the little girl dropped off teddy bears, flowers, cards and pictures at the makeshift memorial.
The crash had an impact on many North Texans including Chris Rausa, who brought his two sons, ages 4 and 6, to the crash site to offer condolences the only way he knew how.
“I wanted to come and pray for them,” he said.
Just behind the memorial, Lake Worth police officers and Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department deputies continued to investigate the scene. They worked to map the distance between crash sites in hopes of calculating how fast the driver, Vincent Martinez, was going.
Marinez was driving his blue Ford truck through the shopping center parking lot when he hit four people in front of the Ross Department Store. the 82-year-old’s vehicle continued through the parking lot and hit two more children near the Target store. One of those children, Savannah Deegear, later died from her injuries.
The horrifying crash was caught on store surveillance cameras.
Martinez’s family told authorities the elderly man may have had a diabetic emergency during the crash.
Savannah Deegear’s father, Mark Deegear, said his daughter was ripped from his wife’s hands and she was gone in seconds.
“I just know people need to realize how much they need to love on their kids and tell them how much they love them,” he said.
Ginnie Rankin witnessed the chaos after the crash and saw Savannah Deegear as she was being placed into an ambulance.
“It just devastated me,” she said. “I couldn’t sleep the first night… had trouble sleeping last night. I just was thinking about it all day long.”
Rankin later went back to the scene to drop off a teddy bear for Savannah.
“I just felt like I needed to do that for myself, to honor this little girl that just lost her life at such a young age,” she said. “Just so innocent, you know walking out of the store with her parents. One minute she’s there and the next second she’s gone.”
Funeral services are still being arranged for Savannah Deegear.
A vigil will be held at the crash site Tuesday night at 8 p.m.
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