Israel Ethan Hernandez was reported missing after not coming home on November 9. His family distributed over 5,000 fliers in their neighborhood, hoping someone had seen him.
His body was only found a week later, on November 16, by a Texas Department of Transportation worker who was replacing an interstate light. Israel’s body was found in a ditch on the I-30 Service Road near the Loop 820 interchange. It is unclear when Israel was struck. Police have been unable to locate any witnesses or camera footage of the incident.
Police currently have no leads on who was responsible for the accident.
“We want justice,” Camy Vera, Israel’s grandmother, said. “So, this doesn’t happen to another family.”
Hernandez’s family is asking for any witnesses to step forward.
Family members described searching for him when he went missing. “I mean, we searched this street up and down,” Kristy Day, Israel’s aunt, said. “We didn’t go into that median area.”
“The main question is who did this? Why didn’t they stop and render aid,” Day said.
Hernandez’s family has started a GoFundMe page to raise money for funeral and memorial expenses. As of Tuesday, the page had raised more than $13,000. The page is also calling for justice for the hit-and-run victim.
“We are all deeply saddened by this as we have so many unanswered questions,” the page reads. “The passing of Israel Ethan is beyond difficult for all of us! No parent should have to bury a child…no Mother should have to bury a Son!”
The GoFundMe page describes Hernandez as a “funny comedian” with a heart of gold.
“He had a smile that brightened up any room and he was a true friend to all. Ethan brought endless joy into this world. His legacy will live on in the hearts of all those who knew him!” the page reads.
“If it wasn’t an accident, we want to know it was an accident,” said relative Carrisa Vera. “Come forward and let us know what happened. You are the last person that was in contact with Ethan.”
Camy Vera, the victim’s grandmother, said, “Help us get answers, because what if this was you? What if this was your nephew or your grandson.”
The Fort Worth Police Department is asking anyone with information to contact them.
Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $1,000 in cash. Call 817-469-TIPS (8477).