Victim of fatal hit and run in Fremont was 81-year-old longtime dentist

An 81-year-old grandfather and longtime dentist is the victim in a fatal hit-and-run in Fremont’s Niles District. It happened last week at the intersection of J and 2nd streets.  He died Monday.

The family is grief-stricken. They want closure, especially after police released new surveillance images of two cars that may provide answers.

"He’s the greatest dad we ever had," said Greg Plasch, victim’s son. "He was always there for us."

Richard Plasch leaves behind two sons and a widow. He’s described as an avid skier who just last week was in Heavenly Valley. He loved to fish and he not only made people smile but helped with their smile.

"He did of free dental work for people," said Greg Plasch. "He touched a lot of people with his compassion."

Dr. Plasch retired from a 50-year career in dentistry in Hayward two years ago. Every morning, the 81-year-old would walk his yellow Lab Maizie for exercise.

On Mar. 9, he was heading to the post office to drop off a letter. What happened around 6 a.m. at the intersection of J and 2nd Streets in Fremont’s Niles neighborhood is unclear.

"We had heard a metallic sound, whether it be a popping sound, just an impact of some kind," said Barry Jennings of Fremont.

Plasch was found lying in the roadway, rushed to a trauma center. His injuries consistent with being hit by a car. The car didn’t stop.

"He had a fractured elbow, fractured shoulder, three cracked ribs," said Doug Plasch, victim’s son.

He also had severe brain trauma. He succumbed to his injuries on Monday.

"It’s complete shock," said Doug Plasch. "It’s hard to believe such randomness can take someone away."

It happened in spot with no cameras. Coincidentally, two new stop signs were put up after the accident.

"We’ve had a problem at this intersection for a while," said Kurt Westendorf of Fremont. "Naturally, people think it’s a four way stop and it's not, so people blow through."

Cameras in the area did capture two cars of interest to investigators, a dark colored car, possibly a minivan and another car described as a light gray or gold Chevrolet Tahoe 4-door SUV.

"If people see anything or know anything, please provide that information," said Greg Plasch. "It just helps us."

Dr. Plasche leaves behind three grandchildren, who miss their grandfather dearly. If anyone has any information or recognizes those two cars, contact Fremont Police at (510) 790-6800 ext. 6774.

Azenith Smith is a reporter for KTVU.  Email Azenith at and follow her on Twitter and Instagram @AzenithKTVU or Facebook or