After a Long Beach father of five is killed in a hit-and-run crash, his family is devastated as the suspect remains at large.
On April 14, Edward Corral, 41, who also goes by the nicknames “Tito,” and “Chico,” was fatally struck while crossing the street.
Tito spent his entire life in Long Beach and his family said he loved being a part of the community.
But tragically, the street where he loved to walk also became the street where his life ended.
Similina Alaimalo, Tito’s grieving wife, said she had to explain to her five children — ranging in age from 4 to 19 years old — that their father was not coming home.
“It’s been hard…it’s been hard,” said a distraught Alaimalo.
On April 14 at around 9:15 p.m., Tito was crossing Atlantic Avenue near 53rd Street, outside of a crosswalk, when a car slammed into him, thrusting his body several feet onto a concrete median.
The driver sped off into the night before police could arrive.
Because Tito did not have identification on him at the time, he was rushed to intensive care as a John Doe before family members were able to identify him a day later. They said they were not prepared for what they discovered.
“He was admitted to the ICU with severe head trauma, swelling of the brain, broken legs, broken ribs, broken hips, he was on a ventilator,” said Andrea Lopez, Tito’s sister.
Four days later, doctors declared Tito brain-dead. He passed away after life-supporting measures were discontinued.
“Very tough situation for the entire family to sit around in agony and waiting for a miracle to happen,” said Lopez.
A memorial at the scene where Tito was struck has been growing while a constant flow of visitors pay their respects.
Family members said Tito worked in a warehouse years earlier before becoming disabled.
From then on, he loved walking around the neighborhood and picking up odd jobs here and there or simply stopping to offer someone a helping hand or enjoy a bit of conversation.
“He’s here. He’s everywhere,” said Tito’s wife. “Everyone knows him here. He called himself the ‘Governor of Long Beach.’”
“He had a life ahead of himself,” said Tito’s sister. “He had kids he had to see grow and unfortunately he’s no longer here with us.”
Police are still investigating, trying to track down the suspect through security footage from street cameras.
Grieving family members are urging anyone with information to come forward and talk with Long Beach police.
A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to help with funeral expenses.