Hit and run victim’s mother speaks out

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A hit and run last weekend ended with a man dead and a family shattered.

The victim’s mother is now speaking out about her son, and about that terrible night.

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Claresa Fosnow and her husband picked up her son, 26-year-old Richard Cathey the day before. He was coming to Wilmington from Myrtle Beach to spend the weekend with his family.

Family members said Cathey was a good older brother and son. Though he no longer lived in Wilmington, he would sometimes send his mother hand-written notes just to say he loved her.

Early in the morning on May 1, Claresa Fosnow said her son was walking to her house after a night out with friends when 28-year-old Mitchell Walker hit Cathey and drove off.

“How do you leave somebody on the side on the road in that shape and in that condition, like a piece of trash,” Fosnow asked. “And more worried about his car? Because he pulled up a block away and looked at his car, his car, instead of going back and checking on my baby that was laying in the road.”

Fosnow said her son was unidentified when he was taken to the hospital, but as she walked to the corner of Wilshire and South College Road, she noticed her son’s hat sitting in the middle of the street. Emergency workers directed her to New Hanover Regional Medical Center.

“And I said, well is he ok? Is he alive? And they wouldn’t answer anything. But I can still see his hat laying in the… laying in the road.”

Authorities said Walker ditched the car he was driving in Oak Island. Police said Walker admitted to having between five and seven alcoholic drinks before getting behind the wheel, and was later arrested.

Though justice could be served, Fosnow said it won’t bring her son back.

“Coming back to Wilmington is going to be so hard. I sit in my front yard, and I look at the corner waiting on him to come around that corner and say I’m home Mama. And he’s not doing that. He’s not coming around that corner and telling me he’s home.”

The family set a memorial in Cathey’s honor on the corner of Wilshire and College, where he was hit. Fosnow said Cathey didn’t have life insurance, and now his family is struggling to afford a service. They’ve posted a GoFundMe at this site, if you’re interested in learning more.

It was difficult to even find the words, but Fosnow did offer some advice.

“If you have kids, just hold them tight. Because you never know what’s going to happen or what type of people are in this world.”