Fights Back Tears
When Talking About The Death Of "Chris Henry"
Lee Hardy, is the neighbor, was on a 15-foot ladder cutting back some trees when he saw the yellow pickup "zooming" up the Tongas' gravel driveway just a few yards away.
Hardy said a shirtless black man clung to the top and side of the truck while standing in the bed, begging her to stop the vehicle.
"He was banging on the top, on the doors, screaming at the lady, 'We need to talk,'" Hardy said. "He said, 'If you take off, I'm going to jump off the truck and kill myself.'"
Hardy said she stopped, hesitating at the end of the driveway, and took off.
Soon afterward, emergency dispatchers got at least two calls to 911.
One came from a woman driving behind the truck.
"I'm driving behind a yellow F-150, there's a black man on it with no shirt, he's got his arm in a cast," the woman said. "He's beating on the truck … I don't know if he's trying to break in it or something crazy."
Then this call: "I need an ambulance now," a man said when he called dispatch. "There's a man laying in the road … he looks dead, there's no movement."
The caller went on to tell dispatchers that a crowd of people were standing around Henry. Someone was taking his pulse.
The spot where Henry hit the pavement was just a half-mile from Tonga family home. According to police, Tonga stopped immediately and rushed to his side.
"She pulled the vehicle over to get out and help," said Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer Rosalyn Harrington.
No charges were filed Thursday by police in connection with the incident.
"Even though this is a high-profile case, we are treating it like any other case in Charlotte," Harrington said.
About 6:30 a.m. Thursday, after hours of hoping and praying by family, friends and fans for a miraculous recovery, Henry died at Carolinas Medical Center south of downtown Charlotte.
He left behind three children. He and Tonga had two children together, Chris Jr., 2, and DeMarcus, 1.