Why We’re Here: Mitchell Pewitt, Jr.
A tow-headed blonde with an adorable smile: Mitchell “Mitch” Pewitt, Jr., was loved by the whole family! He spent lots of time with his Uncle Roy and Aunt Millie. He was an energetic 19-month-old and he loved their daughter, Lori, his 4-year-old cousin.
Mitch’s uncle, his father’s brother, had been in a car crash the night before. Mitch’s parents, Mitchell and Becky, had stayed at the hospital with him. So little Mitch had spent the night with Roy and Millie.
He was riding with them in their car on August 14, 1971, when a drinking driver with a BAC of .08 rear-ended them. The gas tank exploded and the car was sent flying. Mitch, Lori, and Millie were thrown from the car. As it toppled over them, flames and gasoline spewed all over their bodies. Roy ran to put out the flames using his bare hands, but Mitch was burned on 90% of his body.
At the hospital, responders went upstairs to find Mitch’s parents. They told Mitchell and Becky that they needed to come downstairs because their son was there… and he was dying. Mitch lived for six long, agonizingly painful hours before his death on August 15, 1971.