HOUSTON (FOX 26) - A driver involved in a deadly street racing crash on Christmas Day is under investigation by the Harris County Sheriff's Office. Meanwhile, the family of a man killed in that crash is speaking out.
It's the worst news a family could receive on Christmas. They learned their father and grandfather, Johnny Patterson, had been hit and killed by someone street racing, according to deputies.
"When I saw some of the footage of the damage, it was gut wrenching," said Chantina Lister, Patterson's daughter.
"It's painful because of how it happened," said Malik Brumley, Patterson's grandson.
Lister and her son were headed home from a Christmas get-together when they got the call about her father who is in his 60s.
Sheriff's deputies say Patterson was leaving a store, pulling out onto Hwy 249 when one of two Mustangs racing at high speeds t-boned his Ford Explorer. Deputies say he died along with the driver who hit him, Kevin Strong, 48, of Houston.
"He was zesty," said Lister of her father. "He loved life. I have to say he loved us."
"I hadn't seen my grandpa in a while, 'cause I'd been at school," said Brumley. "So I was hoping when I got back, I could kind of talk to him about stuff and how my degree was going."
Brumley who is transferring to Texas Southern University, never got to have that final conversation with his grandfather.
Lister conducted the interview with FOX 26 from the hospital, as she recovers from a stroke she had after hearing the news of her father's passing.
"I think I did more damage by pulling that video to look at the wreck footage--trying to better understand what happened," said Lister.
As for the other street racer, deputies say his Mustang spun several times after bumping against the other Mustang. The driver, DeVonte Franklin, 25, of Houston, was taken to the hospital with minor injuries, according to deputies.
Sheriff's deputies say Franklin is being investigating, and they'll probably present the evidence to a grand jury at the conclusion of the investigation.
"It should be effective enough to make him understand, you can't just walk away with a ticket," said Lister. "People are dead...because y'all wanted to play real life road racing."
Deputies say they still don't know whether the two Mustang drivers knew each other and planned the race or if it was spontaneous.
The Harris County Sheriff's Office officials say they are putting extra deputies on roads this weekend, in an effort to prevent a similar tragedy.