JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The father, sister and grandmother of an 11-year-old boy who was fatally struck while crossing a street struggled to find words Friday when they went to the site of the crash in Arlington.
Terry Bryant got off a school bus Wednesday afternoon and was walking along University Boulevard, making his way home. After the bus proceeded onward, police said, Terry attempted to cross the street and was struck by a car. He was taken to a hospital, where he died.
Two days later, his out-of-state family members who traveled to Jacksonville saw where Terry, or TJ as he was known by many, was hit and killed.
"Wow. Why now? I don't even know what to think. It doesn't feel real," said Terry Bryant Sr., TJ's father. "Painful. Painful."
Sonia Bryant, the grandmother of the sixth-grader at Arlington Middle School, was visibly upset as she recalled the moment she got the call.
"I was at work, calling 911, 'Someone just come because my grandson got hit and I got to go to Florida," Sonia Bryant said. "My husband called me back to tell me my grandson was dead. I said, 'We have to go.' He was only 11 and only so big."
But, the grandmother said, she has a new angel.
"He has a smile that will warm the world," she said. "You just look at him and he's a special boy."
It was very difficult for the family to be there. They told News4Jax they're hoping the school will either reorganize the locations of the bus stops or at least put more signage up along the road, warning drivers of bus stops.
The Bryants said they were still planning the funeral services, but TJ's resting place will be in Savannah, Georgia.