MMA Fighter's Baby Dies After Being Plowed Down by SUV

72-year-old arrested on DUI, hit-and-run charges in crash that killed Marcus Kowal's toddler
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 6, 2016 8:33 AM CDT
Toddler Son of MMA Fighter Dies After Alleged DUI Crash
RIP, little Liam.   (GoFundMe)

A Saturday walk turned tragic in Hawthorne, Calif., when a 15-year-old girl and a 15-month-old boy in a stroller were plowed into by an SUV, PIX11 reports. Toddler Liam Mikael Kowal, the son of MMA fighter Marcus Kowal and his partner, Mishel Eder, died Sunday from his injuries, and a 72-year-old woman was arrested on suspicion of hit-and-run and drunk driving, Hawthorne police tell the Mercury News. "About an hour ago, our baby was declared brain dead," Kowal posted on Facebook Sunday night. "He tried to fight so hard." The accident took place around 4:15pm Saturday, when the SUV smashed into the toddler and his teen caretaker in a crosswalk. The vehicle fled the scene, but witnesses chased after it and surrounded it about a block away, keeping it and the driver there until cops arrived.

Donna Marie Higgins was arrested and brought to the Hawthorne jail, where she was released on $100,000 bail, per CBS Los Angeles; charges against her may be upgraded to felony vehicular manslaughter now that Liam has died. "Our hearts are broken and there's a void in my soul but we will get through this," Kowal wrote. In a separate Facebook post, Kowal noted that he and Eder were donating Liam's organs "so that his little heart can make another child live and another set of parents not have to go through what we have to." Eder's younger sister, the 15-year-old who had been pushing Liam in the stroller, suffered leg injuries in the accident and is said to be in stable condition, per the GoFundMe page set up by a friend to help the Kowal family with medical expenses and funeral arrangements. (This temporary tattoo lets you know when you've had too much to drink.)

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