Man tries to save boy, realizes it’s his own son

An Iowa man who tried to help a boy who had been struck by a car tragically learned that the child was his own son, according to the Des Moines Register

Timothy Maxon told the newspaper that he saw a vehicle hit a child near Franklin Elementary School in Marshalltown — just 15 yards away from where Maxon himself was parked — and rushed to help. 

“Immediately I blared on my horn to get them to stop. I got out of my car, trying to call 911, but I couldn’t get my fingers to work fast enough,” he said. “I didn’t even realize it was my son until I got up to him.”

The driver of the car, 71-year-old Marilyn Diggins, was reportedly turning a corner before she struck second-grader Christian Maxon. The eight-year-old, who, according to his parents, loved video games and fishing, was still breathing when paramedics and his mother Brittany Maxon arrived. 

“I just ran out the door. I didn’t take time to find anybody to cover (for) me,” Brittany said. “They just said there had been an accident and I needed to get to the school; they didn’t say what had happened.”

The child was then taken to a local hospital before he was flown by helicopter to another location. His mother, who was by his side during the entire trip, said her son’s heart stopped several times along the way. She added that doctors were able to revive him only for a short period. 

“When they went to put him on the Life Flight, they’re like, ‘We’re moving him, but we are not really hopeful that we’re gonna be able to keep his heart going,'” Brittany recalled. 

Just several minutes after the helicopter landed, doctors told her that Christian had died. Timothy later learned the news after he arrived at the hospital. The two parents said they know their son suffered head trauma from the accident but admit they have yet to receive any details from police regarding Christian’s other injuries. 

“It’d be nice to know what’s going to happen, if anything is going to happen,” Timothy said. “Regardless of if the (driver) was 17 or 71, they still took our son’s life.” 

Authorities are still investigating the incident and have yet to press charges against Diggins, Marshalltown Police Lt. Rick Bellile said Saturday. 

Still, the damage has already been done, Timothy said. Both he and Brittany — who separated prior to Christian’s passing — have had trouble sleeping. Neither has broken the news to their son’s 3-year-old sister, although Christian’s 14-year-old sister already knows. 

“It’s been a very tough … week,” Timothy said. “Just devastation.”