Neighbors React to Fatal Crozet Hit-and-run, Blame Speed

April 1, 2013

The investigation continues into Friday night's hit-and-run that left a 71-year-old Crozet man dead, as neighbors begin to express their concerns on a particular stretch of Route 250.

Flowers marked the spot Monday on Rockfish Gap Turnpike near Brownsville Road, where 71-year-old Carroll Herring was killed in a hit-and-run three days before.

"[He was] just a genuine person," said Tracie Bryant, a tenant and friend of Herring's. "He was just a good person to be around."

Bryant lives in a house next door to Herring's.

"Friday afternoon, Carroll just came down here and, just like he does all the time, talks to us, chit-chatted with us, talking with the kids and stuff," Bryant said.

Just hours later, though, tragedy struck.

"My husband finally called me back and said they had just seen Carroll get hit," she said.

Two cars struck Herring as he went to check the mail, and both fled the scene. Police caught up with the first driver to hit Herring, and charges against that person should be announced later this week.

Meantime, police continue searching for a white Saab, which they believe was the second car to strike Herring.

Bryant said she believes speed was a factor in Friday's crash, particularly on this stretch of Route 250.

"Usually, they just speed all the time. They really don't slow down if they see something in the road," she said. "A lot of animals like pets and stuff have been hit on this road because people are not just slowing down."

On Monday, neighbors say they went to the Charlottesville Post Office asking to have the mailboxes moved from where they are now to the side of the road where the houses are. The post office staff said they will do that, but neighbors say it's not the first time they've requested this.

"I think it's sad that it took this to happen for our mailboxes to moved," Bryant said. "A life was taken for someone not paying attention to what they were doing."

Bryant says she's now more vigilant of her kids' playing in the front yard and is keeping a closer eye on them now, as family and friends mourn the loss of Herring.

"He was just a good man," Bryant said. "He's just going to be truly missed."

Funeral services for Herring will take place Tuesday.

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