BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — On Dec. 2, Derek Lee Ramirez Morgan was headed home from bowling with his family on his 39th birthday when the unthinkable happened: He was hit and killed by a car.

Around 9:45 p.m., police responded to a fatal hit-and-run on White Lane near South Real Road. Derek was pronounced dead at the scene. In 2022 so far, Kern County has seen over 50 pedestrian fatalities, with three over the same weekend as Derek’s incident.

“We arrived to the scene about three minutes after he was hit,” said Hannah Kates, Derek’s sister-in-law. “He was laying there in the middle of the road as I’m checking pulse and she’s [Tiffanie Morgan, Derek’s wife] of course just screaming and very upset.”

“There are no words to describe how we felt,” Kates added. “We had just seen him a few minutes ago. We hope and pray the BPD are doing their jobs and can catch this person responsible for a little bit of peace.”

Police said they are searching for the suspect involved in the incident. Officials described the suspect vehicle as a gray mid-2010s model Subaru WRX sedan with front end damage.

The family is reeling from this sudden loss of their husband, brother, father, uncle and friend.

“He just had the biggest heart,” Kates said. “He would give the shirt off his back if you needed at any moment, no questions asked.”

“When he laughed he laughed really loud so you heard it miles away because it was so loud but I always loved it when he smiled; his smile was beautiful,” said Tiffanie Morgan, Derek’s wife.

This is a laugh Derek’s family will never get to hear again.

Morgan said she hopes people on the roads are more considerate in the future.

“People are just doing stuff that they’re not considering people’s families when they’re out doing it,” Morgan said. “Usually the people that are not drinking or doing something stupid are the ones that get hurt.”

To the driver involved, Morgan says this:

“You just took somebody’s father, uncle, husband,” Morgan said. “He has people that really loved and cared for him and you just took him away.”

You can help the family lay Derek to rest by donating to their GoFundMe.

Anyone with information on this accident is asked to call Bakersfield police at 661-327-7111.