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‘He had a heart of gold:’ Family mourns man killed in West End hit-and-run

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HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- A man found lying on Patterson Avenue, just west of Gaskins Road, appears to have been killed in a hit and run crash, according to Henrico Police.

Emmanuel "Manny" DeJesus, 24, of Henrico, was found at about 10:25 p.m. Sunday near the intersection of Patterson Avenue and Palace Way.

"[He] was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead," a Henrico Police spokesman said. "The victim's injuries were consistent with being struck by a vehicle, so this is being investigated as a hit and run crash."

Henrico police officials told CBS 6 evidence was collected at the scene, and it they believe the vehicle involved was traveling east on Patterson.  Officers told Dejesus' family they believe the vehicle was a GM.

Prior to the incident Sunday night, DeJesus' family said they were in the process of planning a 25th birthday party for Manny; they said his birthday was only a few days away.

“People make mistakes.  It’s hard to understand, but we do understand.  Just forward, you know what I mean, just come forward," pled Mansoor DeJesus, Manny's younger brother.

“He had a heart of gold, he was a good soul, and he didn’t deserve to die like that," said Monica DeJesus, Manny's mother.

Officers told family members a woman discovered DeJesus and stayed with him until emergency personnel arrived.

“I really do want to thank her. It just shows there are people out here who care," Mansoor DeJesus said.

Witnesses can send news tips and photos here. Friends and family of DeJesus can send memories and condolences here.

Manny's family has set-up a GoFundMe to help cover costs for the unexpected funeral.

"We demand justice and for the person to come forth and accept responsibility for taking Emmanuel's life in order for us to have closure," Mansoor DeJesus said.

Anyone with information about the incident should contact the Henrico County Police Department at (804) 501-5000 or Crime Stoppers at (804) 780-1000.

This is a developing story.