Lavonia Neal heard the screech of skidding tires and a bang so loud she thought two cars must have collided. But when she looked out her window onto Humboldt Avenue on Thursday night, she saw the twisted figure of a woman lying in the middle of the road.
Then she saw the baby, and heard the panicked screams of her Roxbury neighbors as they bent over the little girl: “She’s not breathing! She’s not breathing!”
The 5-month-old girl died on Friday, according to Boston police; her mother remained in serious condition at Boston Medical Center but is expected to survive., officials said
The investigation into the 8:40 p.m. accident is ongoing, but the driver of the car who hit the woman and child stopped, and had not been charged.
Neal, a medical assistant, said Friday that when she realized the baby was injured, her adrenaline and training kicked in, and she rushed down from her fourth-floor apartment.
“My mother’s instinct, my human instinct,” she said. “I was scared, I felt pain. I was focused on the baby.”
The little girl was beautiful, she said, and terrifyingly still.
She gave two chest compressions and blew into the infant’s mouth, she said, and the girl drew a thin breath. Ambulances arrived seconds later.
“I wanted her to start crying,” Neal said. But the child was silent.
The mother was carrying the baby in her arms, according to witnesses, and when she was struck, the baby was launched into the air, landing about 10 feet away.
A long set of skid marks could be seen on Friday, and a blood stain was visible where the mother’s body had come to rest after being hit about 40 feet away.
“She wasn’t moving,” said Gene Roberts, who lives in front of the accident scene.
The man driving the car parked, Roberts said, and got out, clutching his head and pacing.
“He was freaking out,” said Roberts, who said the man was repeating over and over, “Oh my God, I hit the lady.”
The woman who declined to give her name said she heard the man saying, “I didn’t see her.”
There were several other people in the car, the woman said, and they were all distraught.
Three witnesses said the man did not look like he was intoxicated.
Dozens of residents ran to help, witnesses said, as the pink and white baby blankets the child had been wrapped in fluttered to the pavement in the street.
On Friday, police said they were not releasing information about the identities of the victims.
Several residents said the mother was visiting at an apartment on the street. A woman who emerged briefly from the apartment declined to answer questions. She appeared to be crying.
Evan Allen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @evanmallen.