When the only choice for little La’Darious Wylie was save himself or save his 7-year-old sister as a car bore down on them, La’Darious did not blink.
The tiny boy with the huge heart saved his sister.
La’Darious lunged and pushed his sister, Sha’Vonta, out of the way at the school bus stop in Chester on Oct. 27, said Elizabeth McCrorey, the mother of both children.
“He knew to look out for her,” McCrorey said.
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Her daughter told the police what happened and that by the time she was able to get up, the car was gone, McCrorey said.
But that heroic action by La’Darious, just 11 years old, barely 4 and a half feet tall and about 75 pounds, means that his sister survived to do things like go to choir practice.
He sacrificed his own life so that his sister might sing.
La’Darious died Oct. 28 at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte after his mother donated his organs so that other children might survive injury or illness.
The driver of the car, Michelle Johnson, 57, did not stop or render aid or call authorities, Chester police say. Johnson was charged Thursday – more than two days after the incident – with felony hit and run resulting in death. She was released late Friday after posting a $25,000 bond.
If convicted, Johnson faces a year to 25 years in prison.
Still, with a funeral set for 3 p.m. Thursday at Browns Chapel AME Zion Church in Chester for her son, McCrorey said that she and her other six children must endure and live on. McCrorey repeated what she has told so many people since Johnson was arrested: ‘I don’t hate her – I just wish she had stopped.”
La’Darious’ heroic actions have led some in Chester to push for renaming the city’s Brooklyn Park – just down the street from where La’Darious died, and where he played all his life – in his honor. The Joshua Lodge civic group and others have started a petition online with plans to present the park name idea to city leaders.
The death of La’Darious has stunned Chester, yet naming the park could be a fitting tribute. Several city parks are named for leading citizens of the past. Sandi Worthy, Chester city administrator, said the idea has not been brought officially to the city but she expects that the City Council would consider the idea.
Chester County Supervisor Shane Stuart said that he has heard of the idea of naming the park for La’Darious and said it would be “fitting.”
“It would be an honorable way to remember him,” Stuart said.
Andrew Dys: 803-329-4065
Two accounts have been set up to help the family of La’Darious with funeral expenses. Donations may be made at any First Citizens Bank or through a GoFundMe account.Donations also may be made to Kings Funeral Home, 135 Cemetery St. in Chester.