SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) – A Southern California couple in town for spring training is mourning the death of their 2-year-old son who was hit by a car and killed in Scottsdale over the weekend. A friend of the family posted the little boy's name – John Warren Mahlke – and photos of him with his parents on a GoFundMe page.
"A simple outing on a gorgeous weekend morning turned into a nightmare that was unimaginable for this beautiful family," wrote Yassaman Kermanj, who says they are a co-worker and friend of the little boy's mom. According to Kermanj, Sarah and Patrick Mahlke were in the Phoenix area with John Warren because he "showed joy and love for baseball." They planned for the weekend to be the start of a family tradition.
John Warren was with his parents on a sidewalk near Hayden and Royal Palm roads Saturday afternoon when a car jumped the curb and hit him. Police said the 28-year-old woman who was driving lost control of the vehicle. Investigators do not believe speed or impairment were factors in the crash.
The cause of the crash is under investigation.
"Obviously it is a tragedy and it is one of those things where pedestrians are up on the sidewalk, where they belong, this sort of thing happened and we don't know why and now a young life is lost," said Sgt. Brian Reynolds said Saturday.
Although bystanders and first responders tried to save the toddler, he was pronounced dead at the hospital. Neither one of John Warren's parents was injured in the crash.
Kermanj says the Mahlkes will use the GoFundMe money to take their son home to California and purchase a family burial plot.