Local News

Hit-and-run victim's friends asking driver to step forward

Posted May 26, 2011 5:53 p.m. EDT
Updated May 26, 2011 6:18 p.m. EDT

— William Andrews’ body swelled to nearly twice his normal body weight. His liver was lacerated, his clavicle broken, and his spleen and gall bladder removed.

The 69-year-old Franklin County man is in intensive care at WakeMed and will probably be there for at least the next six months. His loved ones spoke out Thursday, asking the driver who is responsible to step forward.

"We want to appeal to that individual to step up and do the right thing," said Randy Helms, Andrews' friend.

Andrews was driving his pickup truck on N.C. Highway 98 near Bunn, not far from his home, on May 10 when he was caught at the end of a chain-reaction crash. His truck flipped, throwing him onto a gravel road, as the driver responsible for the wreck fled the scene, according to troopers.

Helms said he remembers seeing his injured friend lying on the ground.

“You think you’re a grown man, and you’re supposed to be able to take most anything, but that morning I saw him laying there … it will work on you,” Helms said.

Emergency crews rushed Andrews to WakeMed, where he has spent the past two weeks in the intensive care unit.

Highway Patrol troopers say Andrews was traveling west on Highway 98, a two-lane road, when a gray car began to pass him. A red or brown car then tried to pass the gray car, side-swiping it and pushing it into Andrews’ truck.

Andrews’ truck and the gray car both lost control and crashed, as the driver of the other car drove away, troopers said.

The driver of the gray car and a passenger inside Andrews’ truck were not seriously hurt in the crash, which happened just east of the intersection with U.S. Highway 401.

“It will pull at your heart string a little bit,” Helms said.

Andrews is perhaps best-known for being the owner of the Andrews Ford dealership in Creedmoor.

“Everyone in this community knows William Andrews,” said William Haley, Andrews’ pastor.

Anyone with information about the crash is asked to call the Highway Patrol at 252-438-8101.