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Family Of Army Veteran Killed In McClellan Hit And Run Wants Driver To Come Forward

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Lori Hester Page said on Tuesday morning she didn't just lose her father, William Hester, she lost her best friend.

"I'm at a loss. I'm just at a loss. My dad was a wonderful man and a wonderful father," Hester Page said. "He had grandkids and kids and a life to live for and this person took it."

Hester Page and her brother, William Hester Jr., say their dad, a U.S. Army veteran, was the hero who pushed his wife out of the way of a truck on Palm Street and Arnold Avenue likely sacrificing his life for hers. Hester Jr. told CBS13 their entire family is taking his death hard.

"Complete wreck. Complete wreck. I mean I'm not going to try to hide it really is," Hester Jr. said.

But what makes the tragedy even worse for Hester's family is knowing his killer is still out there.

"There are just so many bad things with what happened with the person just not stopping and owning up to the responsibility of what they've done," Hester Jr. said.

He has a message for the person who killed the man he was named after: "I just really hope that this comes to justice somehow. Whether the person owns up to their responsibility and turns herself in or somebody please say something. Don't be quiet. Please say something."

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His sister echoed his message.

"What this person needs to realize is that they took a life. They took my father from his family, from his kids, his grandkids," Hester Page said. "They need to turn themselves in because we have to live without him the rest of our lives."

Hester Jr. said his dad was the rock of their family.

"He was a great man great father. Always was there for us," Hester Jr. said. "I was never felt left alone by him."

"My father was a wonderful person. He was always there for me. Anytime I called him he picked up the phone," Hester Page said. "This person has taken all those things all those from me."

He was with his wife Deborah at the time of the incident and pushed her out of the way when he saw a truck come screaming toward them. And while heartbroken, his family's not surprised.

"I feel as though my dad is a man did what he needed to do to protect his wife. He loved her very much and wanted to protect her," Hester Page said.

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"That was him and he would do anything for our mother," Hester Jr. said. "So that's exactly what he did."

Hester Jr. said he'll hold on to the memories of family trips, his father's love for fishing, and how much he loved being called grandpa. Though, the family said the name "hero" is what most people call him now.

"They understand who he was as a person and the act that he did," Hester Jr. said. "We can only hope that God saw that act too and bless him and for that too."

Hester's son said their father would still be around if the suspected driver paid more attention.

"There's no need for anybody at a speed like that around a veteran medical facility. Almost anybody going in there is going to be someone that can run," Hester Jr. said.

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Hester Jr. also told CBS13 that something should be done to make the area safer for other vets like his father.

"It just seems like there are some issues with the traffic signals in that area," Hester Jr. said. "So there needs to be something to warm people that people are crossing."

This family, hoping for change, is demanding justice.

"They need to turn themselves in because we have to live without him the rest of our lives," Hester Page said.

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