NEW YORK CITY — A hard-working Ecuadorian immigrant who came to Queens three years ago to provide a better life for his family back home died Monday morning in a grisly hit-and-run accident, cops and relatives said.
Manuel Campoverde, a construction worked who just celebrated his 25th birthday last week, was blocks from his Corona home when a black sedan struck him near Junction Boulevard and 34th Avenue about 2 a.m., according to the NYPD.
The car hit him with such impact that he was tossed out of his shoes and his clothes were ripped from his body, relatives said. His wallet still hasn't been found.
Campoverde was taken to Elmhurst Hospital, but he could not be saved. No arrests have been made.
“The family is very close,” his emotionally shattered brother, Nicolas Campoverde, 36, said. “Our country doesn’t have work, but he was very hard working. He came here to make money and send it home to our mommy and daddy.”
Relatives said the young man, the fifth of his parents’ eight children, worked tirelessly as a construction worker in the Bronx and loved to play soccer and cheer on F.C. Barcelona in his spare time.
“He was working during the day (Sunday). He went to the park to play soccer, then he was with friends last night,” Nicolas Campoverde said, fighting back tears.
"We don't know anything more," he added. "The police told us there's an investigation."
Beatris Campoverde, 40, Manuel’s sister, pleaded for witnesses to come forward.
“I can’t believe it,” she said, tears streaming down her face. “I hope someone says something. All we want is justice.”