GASTONIA, N.C. — A toddler is fighting for his life after being hit by a vehicle driven by his father, who police said was impaired.
Channel 9′s Ken Lemon learned 1-year-old Andrew McGary was with several people outside of his family’s home on Liberty Street in Gastonia around noon Monday when his father, 19-year-old Jimmy McGary, got in a car to leave.
Andrew’s mother said the toddler darted out behind the car as it started backing up and he was hit.
He was taken to CaroMont Regional Medical Center with serious injuries before being airlifted to Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte. The toddler has a fractured skull and is on a breathing tube.
Police charged his father with driving while impaired and with no operator’s license. He was booked into the Gaston County Jail under a $100,000 bond.
According to arrest warrants, Jimmy McGary admitted to smoking marijuana an hour before the accident and taking prescription medication earlier that day.
Neighbor Feleisha Russell said she gets emotional thinking about Andrew.
“He is so precious," she said. "He would always wave back and forth at us, ‘Hey. Hi.’”
Russell said she is also praying for the child’s father because it was an accident. She said she sees the two together outside all the time.
“He loves his father. I see 'em out here playing. He’d go tossing him up and down, playing with him and he’s got a smile from ear to ear -- father and son,” she said.
Andrew’s mother is working to raise money for her son’s medical bills. He turns two next week.
The crash remains under investigation and any witnesses should call Officer A.L. Carpenter at 704-842-5168.
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