School crossing guards volunteer their time to ensure that children get safely to their cars or across the street. No one would ever think that one of these volunteers would lose their lives in the process.
Volunteering His Time
Ashley Dias worked for a biotechnology firm but doubled as a school crossing guard for his former junior high.
The last time, he assisted a group of students crossing when a car hit him and one of the students.
A parent said the students were”barely able to get out of the way.” They also said that Dias “pushed the student towards the sidewalk and just out of reach from the car.”
Student Stella Champion is a sixth-grader who saw first responders helping aid Dias. When he pushed the kids out of the way, he was pulled under the SUV,
“He was getting pulled out by the paramedics, and he was getting CPR,” Champion told KABC. “I think there was a kid injured, but the crossing guard saved the kid.”
According to the Conta Costa Sheriff’s Office, “One person was reported to be trapped under a vehicle. Lafayette police officers, who were assisted by citizens, were able to pull an unresponsive person out from under the vehicle. Officers administered CPR until relieved by fire department personnel.”
A Family in Mourning
Dias was taken to John Muir Hospital but died of his injuries. His mother, Gloria, said, “The father of one of the kids came to me, a doctor at John Muir Hospital, and he said ‘if it wasn’t for your son, my daughter would be dead.'”
“He died a hero, but he’ll never come back to us. He’s gone.”
His father, Fabio Dias, said he was crushed.
“He was a great son. It is unbelievable. Just this morning we spoke to him. In the afternoon we spoke to him before he went at 2 o’clock for the crossing.”Fabio Dias
Dias was wearing the bright orange safety vest many crossing guards donned so that he would be easier to see.
The woman who hit him is a student’s grandmother. The child and the grandmother were not hurt.
“We are so incredibly sorry and devastated by this unthinkably horrible incident,” said the woman. According to the police, she is cooperating fully with the investigation. However, they have yet to file charges in the matter.