BARBERTON, Ohio — In his two short years of life, Martaevus Scott touched a lot of lives with his happy, ball-of-energy personality.
His grandfather, Lawrence Scott, said Martaevus was special and very smart. He also enjoyed singing and dancing.
"Me and Martaevus spent a lot of time together," Scott said as he fought through tears. "I felt like he was going to grow up and be one of my main protectors."
On Sunday night, the young child was killed in a tragic crash on Route 18 in Sharon Township.
The heartbroken family is receiving an outpouring of support through a fundraising effort and from the toddler's daycare center in Barberton.
As of Friday afternoon, more than $3,000 was raised through a GoFundMe page to help pay for funeral and other expenses.
The staff at KinderCare in Barberton is also heartbroken, remembering Martaevus as a bright light who was always excited to be at the center.
"We're feeling this loss hard too. It's like losing a member of our family," said Lauren Hanhart, the center's director.
To honor the boy, KinderCare is in the process of building a memorial free-standing library outside of the building. Parents will be able to leave or take a book in memory of Martaevus.
"Hopefully, it's a way we can commemorate some milestones for him and just spread his light and his love across this community," Hanhart said.
The child's father, Jaquan Amos, has been touched by the kindness of others.
"That really means Martaevus meant something, other than to us. He meant something to everybody," Amos said. "I really do miss my son. I miss him so much. I cry so much, sometimes you can't cry no more."
The accident happened around 8:11 p.m. on Route 18 near Beach Road.
Troopers with the Ohio State Highway Patrol were told a Chevrolet Malibu driven by the child's mother became disabled after running out of gas on the highway. It was partially in the right eastbound lane when it was struck by Jeep Liberty.
The boy, who was in the backseat, was rushed to Medina Hospital where he died.
His 19-year-old mother and a 17-year-old female passenger, along with the other driver, a 25-year-old man, were transported to Cleveland Clinic Akron General for non-life threatening injuries, troopers said.
After the crash investigation is completed, the findings will be turned over to a prosecutor for review.
"Any potential charges are pending the completion of that process," authorities said.
Lawrence Scott said he understands that accidents happen, feels for everyone involved and will await the outcome of the the investigation.
"It's unbelievable, not what happened. It's just unbelievable that he's not here no more," he said. "I'm gonna truly miss him."