Family reports death of Route 47 accident victim

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GREEN CREEK - The family of Sammy Caraballo III, Woodbine, has reported online the death of the 21-year-old man who was hurt in a hit and run accident on Route 47 at about 1:10 a.m., Sunday, Aug. 24.

According to the website: “It is with great sadness that we share the passing of Sammy Caraballo III. Sammy could light up a room and melt your heart with his smile. Let's celebrate the fact that he graced us with his presence for 21 years. Rest in peace SC3.”

[See related story: Charges against N. Wildwood woman raised after victim dies]

At the time of the accident, Kristen Schwakoff, 25, North Wildwood, was charged with leaving the scene of a crash with serious bodily injury after police said she struck two people while driving her canvas-topped Kia Sport.

Officers responding to the accident said Ryan Burton, 25, Whitesboro, was thrown to the side of the road.

Caraballo, however, landed in the back seat of Schwakoff’s vehicle after being struck, police said.

Police said that night that a witness followed Schwakoff’s vehicle south on Route 47 after the accident, and then onto Fulling Mill Road. Police said the witness was honking the car horn to signal the person to stop.

Burton was taken to Cape Regional Medical Center for treatment, where he was treated and released, according to Susan Staeger, hospital spokeswoman.

Caraballo was flown to Atlanticare Regional Medical Center for treatment.

The Facebook page of Middle Township Athletics has offered condolences to the Caraballo family.

“Our deepest condolences to the family of Sammy Caraballo, a former Middle Township High School student, who passed away on Saturday due to injuries he suffered in a hit-and-run incident. Sammy is the son of Sam Caraballo, volunteer Panthers football and baseball coach, and brother of Marcus, a sophomore,” reads the statement.

On Monday, Middle Township Police Capt. John Edwards confirmed the death of Caraballo, and said the accident is still under investigation.

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