New York Boy Scout Andrew McMorris, 12, was walking with his troop on the shoulder of a road in Manorville on Sunday, when tragedy struck.
The troop and their adult chaperons were making their way to a nearby trail for a day of hiking, according to CBS New York.
They were following the safety protocols, walking on the shoulder and looking towards oncoming traffic. The boys were all wearing bright red shirts.
But when Thomas Murphy, 59, left his golfing club and approached the boys, he struck five of the Boy Scouts with his Mercedes Benz SUV, Suffolk County Police Department confirmed.
McMorris, a seventh grader, sustained the worst of the damage. Thomas Lane, 15, was also seriously injured. The other three children sustained non-life-threatening injuries.
The driver told officers that he had at least three drinks at the Swan Lake Golf Club. According to the criminal complaint, he said:
“Are the kids okay? I know you’re going to arrest me.”
On Monday, McMorris tragically succumbed to his injuries.
The boy’s relative, Doris Schaefer, told Newsday:
“It’s just not right. You can’t drink and drive … That young man meant the world to me. I loved to watch him come in and talk with that deep voice”
In a statement on Monday, the Suffolk County Council of the Boy Scouts of America wrote:
Our Scouting family is going through a terribly painful time. We are sad to confirm the death of one of our youth members following a vehicle-related incident while hiking. We offer our deepest condolences to the victim’s family, and we will support them in any way that we can. Our thoughts remain with the Scouts still recovering from this incident.
Murphy was charged with driving while intoxicated, but could face additional charges. He has yet to enter a plea.
He is being held on $500,000 bond or $250,000 cash bail.