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‘Close to death situation:’ Pedestrian who was among 5 hurt in crash near 40th and North grateful to be alive

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Derrick Johnson

MILWAUKEE -- A 47-year-old man is grateful he's alive after a serious crash near 40th and North in Milwaukee. It happened on July 8, and involved two vehicles and a pole.

Derrick Johnson was headed to the bus stop when it happened.

"Happened really fast. I was walking to the bus stop and we got from 40th and Meinecke to 40th and North and next thing you know, I was knocked out," said Johnson.

Johnson was walking with a woman when another vehicle didn't stop. That car hit another, and a pole -- nearly slicing the vehicle in half.

"I didn't see it coming. It was scary. I don't remember it happening," said Johnson.

Derrick Johnson

Police said the driver of the striking vehicle ran away as Johnson and several others were whisked away to the hospital.

"If the pole would have hit us, we would have been dead. You wouldn't be talking to me now . By the grace of God I'm still alive," said Johnson.

Johnson's sister spoke with FOX6 shortly after the crash, after checking on her brother at the hospital. She and others watched as crews worked at the scene.

"It was scary. Scary feeling. Close to death situation," said Johnson.

Johnson, who stands 6'8" tall, had 16 staples removed from his head and said his stature likely saved his life.

Derrick Johnson

"People driving crazy, fast, slow down and stop for the pedestrians or there will be even more people hit by cars," said Johnson.

Johnson said he'll continue to walk and take the bus despite what happened.

"It just wasn't my time to go. Basically -- that was God," said Johnson.

PHOTO GALLERY

Police said the striking driver who ran was later apprehended. No one has been charged in connection to this crash as of Wednesday, July 18.

Meanwhile, Johnson turns 48 years old on Thursday, July 19. He said he's going to celebrate with cake and ice cream, but said it doesn't really matter what he does on his birthday. He's just happy to be alive.

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