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Army veteran killed in hit-and-run crash in Akron, family pleads for driver to come forward

$2,000 reward offered in the case
George Fry.jpg
Posted at 5:34 PM, Oct 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-27 18:46:30-04

AKRON, Ohio — An Akron family hopes justice is eventually served to an unknown driver who hit and killed a grandfather who served our country.

Army veteran George Fry, 64, died after he was hit by a dark-colored SUV last Friday night on South Arlington Street near Exchange Street. The driver took off and police do not have any suspects.

"He was loving. He was kind, never messed with a soul," said his wife, Charlotte Fry. "He's gonna be missed. He's gonna be missed by a lot of people."

According to police, Mr. Fry was attempting to cross the street from west to east around 8:15 p.m. A vehicle traveling southbound struck him. He died at the scene.

His family believes Fry was trying to make it to Circle K gas station to make a purchase before catching a bus to his West Akron home, but he barely made it onto the road when the tragedy happened.

Based on witness accounts, the SUV appeared to be speeding when it hit Fry, police said.

His daughter, D'Waan Jefferson, can't understand how a driver could leave after running over a person.

"I can't run over a human being and just keep going. I can't do it to a deer, let alone a human being," Jefferson said.

Jefferson said Fry was funny, loved to play a guitar and was in a band "back in the day."

"When my babies were small, he used to play the guitar until they went to sleep, so he was a good guitar player," she said.

Lt. Michael Miller said the SUV should have front-end damage. No further description of the vehicle has been given. Police are still investigating and looking for other possible witnesses.

Charlotte Fry understand that accidents happen, but at the same time, she's urging the driver to turn himself or herself in.

"By all means, don't hit and run. I feel that they should come forward," she said. "That's all we want them to do. Come forward."

Every night since the crash, Jefferson has returned to the scene. She brings balloons and small white candles. Some of the candles spell out the word "Fry" on nearby church steps.

Jefferson also continues to talk with people in the neighborhood hoping to uncover clues in her quest to figure who is responsible for the hit-skip.

"I stand there and I talk and ask God to send me an angel just to tell me what happened," Jefferson said.

Summit County Crimestoppers is offering a reward up to $2,000 for information leading to an arrest and conviction in the case. Tipsters are encouraged to call 330-434-COPS or text TIPSCO with tips to 274637.