Dickinson Little League coach identified as hit-and-run victim in Webster
WEBSTER, Texas – On Monday afternoon, police said the man killed in a hit-and-run crash over the weekend was 24-year-old Adrian Gonzalez Jr.
Webster police said they were notified around 9:40 a.m. Sunday of a body found near the roadway in the 1400 block of Farm to Market Road 528.
“Somebody knows they hit a person, and my baby, they just left him out there. They left him out there by himself to die,” said Erica Penry, Gonzalez's mother.
She said her son watched Game 1 of the American League Championship Series at the Twin Peaks in Webster.
“The last time I heard from him was around 12:28 a.m., when he was leaving from watching the Astros game at Twin Peaks and said, ‘Mom, I’m going home. I just want to tell you I’m OK. Good night, and I’m going home so I can go to church tomorrow,’ and that was it,” Penry said.
Penry said her son lived at Emerson Park Apartments on Farm to Market Road 528 and she believes he walked to the store next to his home.
“I don’t know if he walked to the store because he lived close by to the store by his home, so we’re still trying to get all the details and answers from the police,” Penry said.
She said police are reviewing video from the surrounding areas.
“They said that there were tire marks, fresh tire marks, and they say they suspect it was a Ford F-150, gray,” Penry said.
Webster police said it appeared that Gonzalez died after being hit by a vehicle whose driver fled the scene.
“We’re supposed to be planning his wedding for next year but instead we’re planning his funeral, and it’s going to be the hardest thing we’ll have to do,” said Anna Grieger, Gonzalez's grandmother.
The family said the 24-year-old and his high school sweetheart were supposed to get married in Galveston in May.
Gonzalez was known for his smile, his break dancing skills and his love for his community. He worked for a petroleum company and was also in school studying drafting, with the hopes of becoming an engineer.
When he wasn’t studying, he spent his time coaching with the Dickinson Little League.
“You really do feel like you’ve lost a member of your family. Adrian had an enduring energy. He was magnetic. He was intensely competitive. The most important thing about Adrian was his childlike love for God’s kids," said Jessie Brantley, president of the Dickinson Little League.
Brantley said everyone is still in shock and wants to pick up the phone to call Gonzalez, who coached dozens of children, including his younger brother.
“Adrian was 24. He’s a kid himself, college student, volunteering time for a civic duty because he loves kids and he wants to make his community better and we don’t have enough of that. We can’t afford to lose guys like Adrian,” Brantley said.
He hopes other young men learn from Gonzalez and volunteer in their communities.
“I just think it’s all a dream, a terrible nightmare,” Penry said. “If anybody knows anything, if anybody saw anything, just please say something. Report it. If somebody was with that person, please say something.”
If you have any information, call the Webster Police Department at 281-332-2426.
"Just come forward. It's going to eat you alive if you don't,” said Penry.
A fundraiser has been set up to help raise money to help cover funeral costs. To donate, go to GoFundMe.com.
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