Family ready to forgive hit-and-run driver in fatal crash

Michael Watkins, 35, was walking along Buchanan Road near Meadows Avenue at about 4:30 a.m. Saturday when he was hit by a red vehicle, possibly a Ford F-150 pickup truck with a sunroof. The driver never stopped.

Watkins' widow says she learned about happened when a friend forwarded her a stranger's video on Instagram.

"And it was of Michael laying on the floor, and somebody was trying to resuscitate him, and I was just like, 'Why would you show me something like that? You could have just said it. I did not need the visual.' "

She had to tell their 7-year-old son, also named Michael, that his daddy isn't coming home. Father and son shared the same birthday in February.

"I explained to him that his dad is no longer here, and he still, every day he says he still misses his dad, or he wants to go fishing with his dad," she said.

Watkins worked in construction. He was a man of few words, but his smile, his family says, spoke volumes.

"He really was a person that everybody loved. He treated everybody the same. He was nice to everybody. He always wanted to make sure he was protecting everybody," Antinette Watkins said.

The victim died on his mother's birthday. But Yvonne Alexander says she holds no ill-will toward the driver.

'We pray for them, that they don't have any guilt, and that the love of God will just be in their soul. And that they would come forward," Alexander said. 

"We believe in forgiveness, but we want answers," said the victim's brother David Edmond. "We want to know what happened - we need to know what happened."

Antinette Watkins, said, "This is still a person, and you just treated him like he was just a slab of meat, and drove off. And so I think that's what bothers me the most." Pittsburg police say they are following leads with the help of surveillance video but are asking anyone with information to come forward. The family has set up a Gofundme page. 

"I'm just going to miss feeling, like, I know Michael loved me unconditionally, and I feel like somebody took that from me," Antinette Watkins said through tears Monday.

She says she feels like it's all a dream, and that she'll see her husband of eight years, Michael Watkins, again.

"It's almost like, I just want to wake up and this will all be - fake," she said.