Famous Norfolk Boxer Struck, Killed in VA Beach
World champion boxer Pernell “Sweetpea” Whitaker has died after being struck by a car in Virginia Beach. The four-time world champion grew up in Norfolk, won an Olympic gold medal in 1984, and retired in 2001. He trained at a local gym for years before being inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. Tragically, Whitaker’s life was cut short last Sunday when he was struck by a pickup truck on Northampton Blvd.
Reports indicate that Whitaker was crossing the intersection of Northampton Blvd. and Baker Road the night of the accident. Police received a call about the incident around 10:00 that night. When they arrived on the scene, they discovered that the victim had already succumbed to his injuries. The driver involved was not drinking at the time of the wreck and was not speeding when they struck Whitaker. Police have not charged anyone involved in the collision.
“I guess he was wearing dark clothes, the road was dark, and the driver didn’t see him,” Whitaker’s 23-year-old son told reporters. This heartbreaking loss highlights a common challenge for pedestrians: visibility. Too often, people set out for walks without considering how they may or may not appear to motorists on the roadway. It’s why experts advise walkers, joggers, cyclists and anyone out and about on the street at night to wear clothing made of brightly colored reflective material.
We send our condolences to the young man who lost his father, and the rest of the Whitaker family. Their grief is no doubt profound. We can only hope others will hear of this tragedy and learn more about safe pedestrian practices for the future.
Personal Injury Lawyers at the Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC
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