Parents of Concord teen killed in hit-and-run are honoring their son
CONCORD, Calif. - A popular Concord teenager has died from injuries suffered after being struck by a driver who fled the scene on Monday.
From John Muir Medical Center on Friday night, Leslie and Joe Barratt II told KTVU that their son, who was named Joe after his father and grandfather, was an organ donor and his organs will now carry on through others.
“Kind, nonjudgmental, accepting, not a mean bone in his body. His moral compass would put us all to shame,” said Leslie Barratt as she described her 18 year-old son.
Leslie Barratt had a much different tone when talking about the driver, who killer her son. ”He took away our life. He has no idea what he did. He’s devastated the entire family.”
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The Barratts are struggling with the sudden, senseless death of their only child.
“He followed his own path which made him even more special,” said his father Joe.
The teenager played the cello for Concord High School’s orchestra. He was also a rapper who wrote his own music.
“He was stolen from us,” said his father.
On Monday night around 9:15, the couple says Joe was walking home after getting off a bus following a visit to the library.
He was found in the roadway on Port Chicago Highway near the Highway 4 on-ramp.
CHP says Joe was found unconscious with massive injuries.
His parents say his organs are being harvested to give life to others.
“They’re working on a 17-year-old boy who needs a heart and there’s somebody at Stanford who needs lungs,” said Leslie Barratt.
Just over a week ago, Joe and his father were at the DMV to get his first California ID card when the teen decided to be an organ donor.
Joe’s ID card arrived in the mail Thursday.
“It’s heartbreaking, absolutely heartbreaking,” said his father as he held up Joe’s card which he keeps in his wallet.
Joe's parents describe him as being the first to welcome a new student at school. They say Joe's legacy will now live on in others.
“He’s not dead. He’s got a lot more to give,” said his father.
His mother says the family is struggling to cope with what happened, “Who hits somebody and keeps on going? Somebody without a moral compass.”
Leslie had just bought Joe’s cap and gown for his high school graduation in June.
Now, she will be planning a public memorial for him instead.
A CHP spokesperson says a tip has led investigators to a likely suspect and the vehicle involved, but no arrest has been made yet.
The CHP is asking anyone with information about the incident to contact authorities.