GLADSTONE, Mo. -- Family members are heartbroken after Ryan Rossiter was struck by a vehicle and killed early Saturday. They said he had just moved back to the metro and had landed a good job; he was walking home from work when he was hit. Police said the driver fled the scene.
Ryan Rossiter, 24, was hit and killed early Saturday morning while walking near N.E. 73rd Terrace and Missouri 1 in Gladstone.
Police were called to the area around 2:30 a.m. in reference to a vehicle hitting a pedestrian. Police say an SUV heading southbound on Missouri 1 hit Rossiter and allegedly fled the scene. Police have questioned at least one person believed to be involved in the crash, but have not made any arrests. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.
Rossiter's family members are heartbroken. They describe the 24-year-old as fun loving, gentle and passionate about his hobbies and his family.
“He was a wonderful brother, he was a funny guy,” said mom, Mary Rossiter.
“We were really close, he looked up to me, figuratively because he was much taller than me,” said brother, Corey Rossiter.
Family members say Ryan had been diagnosed with autism and was very high functioning.
“He was the sweetest giant you would ever come across. Since he was such a high-functioning autistic it was almost like he was still a kid in a big man's body,” Corey explained.
Ryan's mom and brother say he loved weightlifting and wrestling, and had just moved back to Missouri from Michigan to be closer to family. He had found a good job and was walking home from work at the time of the crash.
“When this happens, your mind just goes numb and you’re in shock and you don’t know, and it feels like you’re in a really bad dream,” said Mary.
She says she forgives the person who hit her son, but would like to see someone brought to justice for their actions.
“There are consequences that they are going to have to face besides the fact that they killed my child,” said Mary.
Mary lost her husband three years ago, and says as a widow on a limited income, it’s very difficult to come up with money for this unexpected funeral.
She still wants to give her son a proper burial so the family started a GoFundMe page to help raise money for the funeral expenses.