Student expresses concern after 18-year-old UF student killed in hit and run
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Students and faculty are mourning the loss of 18-year-old Margaret Paxton after she was killed in a hit and run. Paxton was crossing university ave when she was hit Wednesday night around 11 p.m.
The Assistant Vice President of University of Florida Communications, Steve Orlando, said he can’t imagine her family’s pain.
“As a father myself, I couldn’t imagine the pain and anguish that the family must be going through right now and of course especially compounded with this happening around the holidays,” said Orlando.
Her friends and family have raised over 15 thousand dollars through GofundMe for memorial costs.
“Our prayers go out to the family and to the friends of course,” added Orlando. “I know that she had lots of close friends here on campus so we are all thinking about them right now.
While the university does give their condolences, students are worried about the safety of just walking across the street.
“It’s very sad like obviously whenever you hear the loss of a fellow classmate,” said UF student, Noah Ram.
Ram is a junior at UF, who was in that area before tragedy struck.
“I was actually walking in this area an hour beforehand,” explained Ram. “So when I found out the news, it was just kind of crazy cause it was like wow if it was an hour later that could’ve been me.”
The thought that someone would flee the scene scares him even more.
“Especially from what I’m aware of it was a hit and run so that makes it extra scary and just a little nerve-wracking to be honest,” added Ram.
As a biker himself, he says riding down University Ave is typically hectic. Ram has been at UF for over two years and hopes to see a change in the future.
“There’s too many to think this is just a one-off thing,” said Ram. “I think this is now like a problem and there’s something that should be done about it.
No traffic cam footage has been released. Police believe the suspect was driving a BMW Sedan.
The University of Florida has counseling services available for Paxton’s loved ones and hopes to organize a memorial service of their own.
To donate to Paxton’s memorial fund, click here.
Copyright 2020 WCJB. All rights reserved.