Sidewalk Samaritans: Locals help Kensington family after hit-and-run driver smashes its car

Sidewalk Samaritans: Locals help Kensington family after hit-and-run driver smashes its car
Nicole Block

Call it loving thy neighbor.

Passers-by rushed to the aid of a Kensington family after its vehicle was struck by a hit-and-run driver on July 23, astonishing the locals by their random act of kindness.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if one person stopped, but I was genuinely surprised that so many people came by to let us know they were watching out for us,” said Nicole Block, who was in the car with her husband, 8-year-old daughter, and 4-year-old son.

The family was stopped at a light on Church Avenue between E. Fourth and E. Fifth streets at 6:20 pm when a man driving a silver sport utility vehicle rammed into its sedan as he attempted a U-turn, smashing into the rear driver’s side where Block’s daughter was sitting.

The reckless motorist then waved at Block before fleeing the scene, flabbergasting her, she said.

“He looked at me and actually waved — that type of wave someone does, like, ‘Oops!’ And then he backed up and sped away,” Block said.

Three cars full of good Samaritans and several pedestrians stopped to check on the family following the collision, providing the offender’s license plate number — which Block said she did not remember because she was so angry — and offering to serve as witnesses to the ordeal.

All of the altruists were concerned for her children, said the mom, who suspected her tykes’ plight is what motivated their benevolent behavior.

“We don’t have tinted windows, you can clearly see we had kids in the vehicle, and everybody was just as upset as we are about it,” said Block. “I’m not surprised by New Yorkers trying to help, it’s what I expect, but it was heartwarming to see it after being hit like that.”

And, as Block waited for police with her family, one particularly helpful bystander surprised her by returning to the scene around thirty minutes after the accident with a photo of car that hit hers, she said.

Authorities are still looking for the alleged hit-and-run driver, and the investigation remains ongoing, cops said.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505.