(FOX40.COM) — Tami Teel says her 32-year-old son, Derek Teel, was struck by a car and left to die as he rode his bicycle along Crosby Herald and Wise Roads in Lincoln last Tuesday.
“Thinking about that makes me so disgusted and sick to my stomach that I can’t … like I just keep focusing on that Derek is alive. But I think the most upsetting thing is that I just can’t believe that my son was just left there,” she said.
California Highway Patrol says Derek was ejected from his bike upon impact with what witnesses described as a silver-colored sedan. Instead of stopping to help Derek, CHP says the driver immediately took off, leaving him with life-threatening injuries and a side mirror that was ripped off from the car in the crash.
Derek remains at the hospital with his wife and high school sweetheart by his side, along with children and other family members after undergoing major surgery.
“They’ve now been able to repair his stomach to get him on the other side of healing,” Tami said.
She added that Derek now has a rod in his femur, plates in place for a shattered pelvis, and staples to close a severe laceration to his hip area, which required two pints of blood from all the blood loss.
He also suffered a collapsed lung and a tear in his colon.
She says doctors confirmed that his excellent physical condition was key to him surviving such a traumatic accident and that it will also play a role in the months ahead of rehab and recovery.
Tami says she’s shocked by the callousness of the driver, who simply sped away.
“We’ll find you. There’s no way that you won’t be found. And I pray that you find it in your heart to even be decent [and] turn yourself in….you cannot do that to another human being and not have that be found out. You should feel horrible about yourself.”
And for those who know the suspect, she has a similar message, saying, “They are just as guilty.”
Tami says she is grateful for all the love, support, and prayers from family and friends. Derek has many followers in the cycling world.
But his mom says Derek is best known for his charismatic soul.
“When there was a tragedy in high school, and someone took their life by jumping off the Foresthill Bridge, they asked Derek to lead the prayer of all of the high school. And he has always been known to be the person to lean on because they know that he loves the Lord and he cares for people.”
She continued, “Derek has the most caring heart of any soul I have met.”
Those who would like to donate directly to the Teel family can send them money through Venmo. The username is @mtb_norcal.