A memorial for a Clearwater crossing guard continued to grow Wednesday, a day after he was killed on the job.
Doug Carey, 70, was working at the intersection of Gulf to Bay Boulevard and South Belcher Road when a car ran a red light, collided with another vehicle and then careened into Carey.
"I've worked this corner with Doug many times. I worked other corners with him," said Norm Runkles, a Clearwater Police aid who trains crossing guards and is now covering Carey's corner. "Great guy. Awesome guy. Awesome crossing guard. The kids loved him."
Carey was a retired Clearwater Police officer and had been a crossing guard in Clearwater since 2010.
"He was just a funny guy. He was just easy-going. You could talk to him," said Runkles. "Honestly, he was a lot like my grandfather. He cared about the kids. He was a great guy."
Laney Walker said she heard about the accident and she and her grandchildren, who both walk through that intersection, decided to put their emotions into words. They wrote a message remembering Carey that has now turned into a memorial for him.
"I cried," Walker said. "I know the heartache that this family is going through and I just wanted to be there for someone."
Friends, other officers and even strangers continue to add to the tribute.
"It was very tragic, heart-wrenching and it's heart-breaking when you lose one of your own," said Clearwater Officer Melody Phelps. "He was a police officer with the city of Clearwater for 20 years, so when you lose a police officer it always hits deep in your heart."
"I have just great things to say about him. He was very kind and went out of his way to do a lot of things for a lot of people so he touched a lot of people," added Phelps' husband, Officer James Phelps.
Julious Johnson, the driver charged with causing the crash, made his first court appearance Wednesday afternoon.
Investigators have said Johnson's two daughters were with him. His 4-year-old daughter was thrown from the car. Instead of checking on her, police said he handed his other 2-year-old daughter to a stranger and ran away.
A judge read Johnson his list of charges which include leaving the scene of a deadly accident, aggravated child neglect and resisting arrest. He's being held without bond.
Investigators said his children were taken to the hospital and are expected to recover.