LOS ANGELES - Like any parent that had the extreme misfortune of losing a child, Mary Ann George says she is devastated.
"We are devastated that we have lost our son who was just an amazing young man," she said.
Her son, Mat George, was killed over the weekend while crossing Beverly Boulevard.
Says George, "He was crossing a street; somebody hit him. In a white BMW… just kept going… didn’t even stop… He was already pronounced dead… they couldn’t even take him to the hospital to do anything for him."
Mat’s mom Mary, dad Santosh and sisters Meredith and Grace sat down for a wide-ranging interview with FOX 11 just days after Mat’s death. From their home in Liberty, Missouri, they reflected on the tragic crash that killed the 26-year-old.
The family says he was walking a few feet in front of a friend when the BMW struck George, leaving the unidentified friend to see it all.
Painful as it was for this family to talk about this, it was also a chance to describe the guy they said came to Los Angeles to find his place in the entertainment industry. He struck gold with a podcast called She Rates Dogs.
Mat’s mom says she would listen every Tuesday as a new podcast dropped. She says she was always proud of Mat even as a little boy. She shows us a picture of a young Mat holding a butterfly.
"That was Matthew," she says.
On July 8, Mary Ann and Meredith came to Los Angeles to see Mat and celebrate Meredith’s 20th birthday. It would be their last visit. Meredith says she’ll remember just getting to spend time with him every day.
As they sit, they think of the funny son, the kind brother and the person who ended his life.
To that person, Mary Ann says, "I’m sure it was an accident. No one would do that intentionally. You took an amazing young man. I don’t think you’re going to be able to live with yourself."
Santosh adds, "We certainly don’t think there was any malicious intent… but there is an accountability for negligence as well."
To Grace, "Mat could never have lived with himself had he don’t something like this to someone else. I don’t think either of us could."
The final thought from mom to the driver of that hit-and-run vehicle, she says, "I’d like you to turn yourself now because there’s obviously an issue…. we don’t want to see another family go through this."
One more thought from Mary Ann. The family is Catholic.
She says, "I think our goal is to forgive because we all know that it is by forgiving that you’re forgiven. And, none of us walk on water… none of us do…"
And, while forgiveness won’t bring Mat back Grace says, "We are religious. Matthew was not religious but Matthew would be the first to sit here and say he forgives them."
Anyone with information on the deadly crash or has possible leads on the suspect is asked to call 213-473-0234.