Woman describes man's final moments after hit-and-run
LEICESTER, N.C. (WLOS) —
The father slowly died as they ran away.
Neighbors were praying that investigators would find the third suspect after the disturbing wreck they witnessed.
"My husband and I were at home discussing plans for a new house we're building, and it sounded like a bomb exploded,” Diane Clay said.
The sound came from down the hill on New Leicester Highway.
"I said,' I gotta go. Somebody's hurt.' Just had that real strong feeling," Clay said.
That feeling turned out to be right.
Clay found Tony Gaston and his daughter inside a car along the highway, with Gaston fighting for his life.
"He was gasping. And when I say that, it was like a fish out of water. And I put my hand on his chest, and you could feel him gurgling. And his daughter was pressing on him, wanting him to wake up, 'Daddy, wake up,'" Clay said.
Clay started checking his vitals.
"When I put my hand on his throat, his pulse was real thready, and then when I put my hand on his cheek to hold his face, and talked to him, he was real cold. And that's when I took her hand and I said, 'Can we pray?'" Clay said.
Clay and Gaston's daughter, who lost her mother five years ago, prayed.
"The whole time I'm saying, 'Tony stay with us, I know you're hurt, help's coming.' And I heard the ambulance coming. And I said, 'I hear sirens, just hang on a little longer.' And then the ambulance crew took over," Clay said.
Law enforcement officers also took over, finding and arresting two suspects hiding in the area.
Multiple days later, investigators positively identified those two men and the third missing man.
"To hear that they caught two of them, I think is awesome. But, I think they really need to throw the books at them. I really, really do," Clay said.
As of Thursday evening, News 13 agreed to not release any names of the suspects as investigators worked to make a third arrest.