Chain reaction crash strikes toddler in stroller in east Austin

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A toddler was taken to the hospital Sunday night after being hit by a driver in east Austin. Keo Johnson says her 20-month-old daughter J’Myza Johnson was in a stroller at the time.

Austin-Travis County EMS said the child was taken to Dell Children’s Medical Center with critical, life-threatening injuries. Johnson said her daughter was still in the hospital Monday morning, but only suffered a fractured elbow and a bruise on her forehead and knee.

“Last night, I really thought I was gonna lose her,” said Johnson.

Keo Johnson says her daughter was hit by a car while in a stroller Aug. 19, 2018 (Courtesy Keo Johnson)

The child was hit on the 7700 block of Cameron Road, just south of US 183, around 10:20 p.m. Police say two cars collided, and one of them hit the stroller in the median. The driver stayed at the scene.

Johnson told KXAN her daughter was buckled into the stroller when she was hit. The stroller also flipped several times. She says her daughter was not breathing so she started giving her CPR, which she learned in college as a child care major.

“I was blowing oxygen through her nose, through her mouth,” said Johnson. “I was pressing on her chest and she finally just huhhhhh,” Keo said making a breathing sound. “And started screaming and I was like, scream baby scream!”

She also believes her decision to strap her daughter into the stroller made a big difference.

“Had I not put that seatbelt on she wouldn’t be here today,” said Johnson.

Johnson, who has been in and out of homelessness, said she purchased the stroller for $10 at a garage sale.

Johnson said she and J’Myza, who she calls Meezy, have put many miles on the stroller. They work as a team making ends meet which involves making deliveries for Uber Eats, DoorDash and Favor.

“A lot of customers come up to the door and they don’t expect it. She’s holding their food and she says ‘Bye, have a great day!'” 

Johnson plans on using the latest experience as another life lesson for her daughter.

“I need Meezy to know that we can’t stop no matter what happens. We can’t stop and we gotta be successful.”

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