Family of 7-year-old hit-and-run victim urges parents, drivers to be more careful
SEATTLE — A 7-year-old girl in Columbia City was hit by a car while she was crossing the street with her family one month ago. She’s starting to show signs of improvement, but she’s still in the hospital.
Neighbors say something needs to be done to make sure no more children like Zeytuna Edo get hurt.
Family members say you can tell a lot about Zeytuna from her smile.
“She’s full of life, she’s a very active young girl,” said her cousin Mohamed Aden. “We hope she will come back to her normal life.”
On Sept. 30, the second-grader was in the crosswalk on MLK Way South on her way to the Boys and Girls Club. She was hit by a Chevy Tahoe. The driver didn’t stop.
“It is beyond terrible,” Aden said. “What happened was very upsetting and inhumane.”
“I just couldn't imagine someone running over someone, especially a child, and continuing on,” said Phyllis Porter, who works with Rainier Valley Greenways, a community group that is trying to make it safer for everyone to walk and bike in the area.
“We want to have everyone to have that right, to have that privilege, to walk up and down the street back and forth without having to worry.”
This weekend she’s holding a vigil for Zeytuna, to be followed by a safety meeting with the mayor and other city leaders. Community members say something needs to be done.
“We need some slowing down of this traffic,” said Jeffrey Taylor. “If we could slow the traffic down maybe to 25 mph, maybe get some turn lane or arrows, that would help.”
“I feel bad for the kids, people need to learn how to drive,” added Yakeeta Little.
Porter said the safety message is especially important with Halloween on Friday.
“What I’d like to say everyone just be extra cautious, put those cell phones down. Pay attention to yourself as well as your child, and just be aware of all your surroundings.”
Zeytuna’s family said drivers need to be more cautious or there will be more accidents.
“What happened to Zeytuna could happen to any child,” said Aden. “As a community and a city, everyone has to strongly work together to prevent or minimize such a thing.”
Seattle police say they are still investigating the accident involving Zeytuna, but have not found the hit-and-run driver yet.
Information about Saturday’s vigil can be found at http://seattlegreenways.org/blog/2014/10/23/vigil-walk-for-zeytuna-edo/