The family of a Chula Vista teenager hospitalized after being hit by a car gathered for a vigil Tuesday night, praying for a miracle that will help the girl pull through.
“Everyone just pray for Kammy,” the girl’s aunt, Donna Gallegos, said at the emotional vigil. “She’s only 14 years old; she has a lot of life in her and life to live. All I want is prayers for Kammy.”
The vigil for Kamrin Gonzalez was held at Fourth Avenue and Park Way in Chula Vista – the very spot near the crosswalk where Gonzalez and her friend, a 15-year-old girl, were hit by a car while crossing the street Monday night.
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According to the Chula Vista Police Department, the girls were walking eastbound in the marked crosswalk at around 7:40 p.m. when a driver traveling north on Fourth Avenue hit them. The driver – identified only as a man in his 60s – was emotionally distraught but stayed at the scene and is cooperating with the investigation.
Both teens were taken to local hospitals; the driver was not hurt.
Gonzalez – identified by her family as one of the two victims – remains in critical condition. The second teen also remains hospitalized but is expected to recover.
Gonzalez’s family said the teen suffered severe brain trauma. Her family has been by her side at the hospital and hope the power of prayer can heal her.
Gallegos said her niece – who is a freshman at Chula Vista High School – has a big heart and always sees the good in others.
“She’s a giver; she gives from the heart,” Gallegos added.
The teen’s godmother, Michelle Gonzales, said the family is worried the girl may not be able to live out her dreams.
“She had all these dreams to go to college,” Gonzales told NBC 7, fighting back tears. “She had dreams to be a baker – a cake decorator. She had such a creative mind; she would make bracelets. She loves her cats – animals were so important to her.”
“Fight, please,” she added. “We need her.”
Neighbors and the teen’s family said Tuesday that the intersection where the girls were hit by the car – which is just south of E Street and east of Interstate 5 – is dangerous. They said safety improvements are much needed there.
“There’s children that walk across here every single day,” Gallegos said. “We need security. We need lights. We need everything from the city to protect the people walking across the street.”
Chula Vista resident Steve Dow lives near the intersection, which is near a community rec center for kids. He often sees kids walking in the area with their basketballs or coming back from swimming at the aquatic center.
Neighbor Carlos Camacho told NBC 7 he’s waved down traffic to slow drivers down in the area.
“I make them stop by putting my hands up – just to make sure they see me,” Camacho said. “We have too much faith in the drivers and we should assume that they don’t see us.”
The investigation into the cause of the crash is ongoing; right now, police do not believe drugs or alcohol were factors.