SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio mother is feeling the weight of the actions of a hit-and-run driver who left her son with life-threatening consequences.
Ida Carrasco Ruiz is the mother of Nicholas Ruiz, 23.
Nick was hit while trying to cross San Pedro Avenue around 9 p.m. Oct. 19. San Antonio police have identified the driver who hit him as Antonio Coronado, 20.
According to a police report, Coronado panicked after hitting Nick Ruiz, kept driving, and called his mother.
Police said about an hour later, his mother called the police and confessed her son committed the crime, which led to Coronado’s arrest for failure to stop and render aid.
Before the crash, Ida Ruiz said her son was always very cautious.
“He is pretty happy-go-lucky,” she said. “He has been living on his own for the past two years. He took the bus everywhere. He walked everywhere. He didn’t drive. He was always just so cautious, which is why when my parents called me and told me he had been hit by a car, I was beyond shocked.”
Ida Ruiz said police told her that Nick Ruiz only suffered from a few bumps and bruises. However, she would soon learn his injuries were much more severe.
“When (the driver) hit my son, my son flew up in the air. His head hit the windshield, bounced off that and hit the ground,” Ida Ruiz said. “Police told his brother he was asleep when he was really unconscious. He’s been in the ICU in that condition for 35 days. That is 35 days of him not being able to talk to me or me being able to talk to him when we normally talked every day.”
Ida Ruiz said Nick has had to undergo several surgeries.
“He has two broken legs, a broken knee, a broken pelvis, a broken clavicle, a brain bleed and severe trauma,” she said. “He’ll never be the same. My son will never be the same. He walked everywhere and probably will never be able to walk again.”
Coronado posted a $4,000 bond a day after he was arrested.
“Yes, he’s been arrested,” Ida Ruiz said. “Yes, he is out on bond, but now he is running around town with freedom. And my son is stuck in his body, and there is nothing I can do.”
Ida Ruiz said her son is a hardworking man and had a job at Panda Express. However, he has no insurance, making his medical bills astronomical.
“He is uninsured, and I have no financial means to handle his bills,” Ida Ruiz said. “Everyone knows just one night in the hospital is a lot. After all of his surgeries, his bills are at least over $100,000. I don’t know how we are going to overcome that, but I will be there for my son through it all.”
Ida Ruiz is currently trying to raise money for medical expenses to help her son. She said she wants nothing more than to see him wake up.
She said the family is not looking forward to the holidays because it’s painful knowing Nick will not celebrate with them.
Ida Ruiz hopes her son’s story servers as a lesson to other drivers, especially during the holiday months.
“These streetways are full of innocent people,” Ida Ruiz said. “You can’t stop in a split second. You are going to take someone’s life forever, or you are going to ruin it forever.”