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Refugee family struggles following hit-and-run

Colton Shone
May 19, 2017 07:20 AM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- A refugee family living in Albuquerque is going through a tough time as the husband and father of eight lies in a coma with a broken spine after a  hit-and-run accident.

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One of their family members was the victim of a hit and run accident on Tuesday while walking across the street near Carlisle and Montgomery. Now the family needs help.

Pictures on the wall inside the Kamndon family's apartment show a better time in their lives. The smiles beam hope and excitement for the new country they would call home. In French, Higuette Kamndon said the family left the Central Africa Republic last year and came to the United States in October 2016.

Smiles quickly turned to tears on Tuesday night as Higuette learned that her husband Olivier was struck down in the accident.

Higuette said Olivier left the apartment to get a soda from the 7-Eleven across the street from where they live when he was hit by a car. She says he’s the sole provider and works to pay for two apartments because the family is so big. One of her children suffers from seizures, another --  a baby -- has cerebral palsy.

Police say the suspected driver Samantha Ramos-Montanez fled the scene but was arrested a short time later. The police report says "she was scared about her license plate being expired, that is why she did not stop." Ramos-Montanez was able to bond out.

Brianna Saban and Mieka Ritsema are volunteers with Lutheran Family Services. They help newly resettled refugee families like the Kamndons.

"There's a lot of anxiety in the family right now and sadness," Saban said. "The older children and mom have been to see him several times. He's in really bad shape."

The volunteers say while Olivier is out, the family has no money coming in at a time when they need it. If you'd like to help them with food, money and rent, here are some links:

https://www.youcaring.com/higuettekamndon-826218

https://www.mealtrain.com/trains/l7q064

Credits

Colton Shone

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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