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911 calls detail how couple helped child in hit-and-run crash

Newly released 911 calls are giving a better idea of how a couple came to the rescue of a young boy in a fatal hit-and-run crash.

The boy’s father, Tom Reece, died in the crash Saturday.

Friends of Reece said they’re glad someone stopped to help 9-year-old Austin, but they want the driver to be brought to justice.

“Words can’t describe what a wonderful father and son relationship (they had.) I think Tom was Austin’s hero and still is,” said Reece’s friend, Patrick Deats. “They were inseparable. They went everywhere together.”

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The two were heading home from a day at the Orlando BMX track, driving on Interstate 4, when witnesses said the driver of a white Chevy Malibu sideswiped them and caused a rollover crash.

The driver of the Malibu didn’t stop.

A nearby couple and their children witnessed the crash and called 911.

“It’s really bad. The SUV in front of us flipped into the woods,” said the caller.

The caller and her boyfriend stopped to help after they witnessed the crash.

“I think there’s a kid. My boyfriend’s walking toward me with a little kid,” she said. “We have a man that got ejected with the vehicle. He has a 6 or 7-year-old with him. I pulled him out of the car. I’m pretty sure he’s not with us.”

While helping Austin, the callers reported that the white Malibu had a front quarter panel that was not white and recalled that the vehicle had been missing a headlight before the collision.
“Can you hear me, bud? He’s breathing. Please stay with me,” said the caller.

Reece’s family and BMX friends said all they can do now is comfort each other, share the vehicle description and pray for justice.

“It’s numbing. I’m still in a fog, even today. It’s hard,” said Deats.

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