World War II veteran killed by Las Vegas woman running from police
In a sad ending to a story that began several weeks ago in Las Vegas, 101-year-old World War II veteran Herbert Muskin died as the result of injuries sustained when a criminal suspect fleeing police at a high rate of speed crashed into the vehicle carrying him, his wife, and their pet dog, as the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.
Muskin sustained a broken neck in the collision, though was recently showing some signs of improvement, as local NBC affiliate KSNV noted, but he ultimately succumbed to the trauma on Thursday.
Fleeing suspects injure WWII vet
Back on March 1, Muskin and his wife were driving home from a trip to Costco and found themselves stopped at a red light near the Henderson intersection of Sunset Road and Stephanie Street, according to KSNV.
It was then that the couple's vehicle was rear-ended by a car driven by an armed robbery suspect who was fleeing pursuing police officers.
The suspect's car was traveling at speeds approaching 100 miles per hour, and the impact sent the Muskins' car careening toward a pole.
While Mrs. Muskin, 89, escaped with bruises, cuts and contusions, she did not suffer any broken bones. Her husband, however, did not fare nearly as well, sustaining a fractured neck vertebra, among other harms, according to the Daily Mail.
Early signs of hope
Over a week after the collision, Muskin's friends and family were initially buoyed by the fact that the 101-year-old veteran had begun communicating again – the first sign of hope that he might be able to recover from the accident, as KSNV noted.
Especially heartened by the development was Mrs. Muskin, who spent a few days in the hospital herself, but was primarily focused on her husband, who she was hoping might achieve “a full recovery.”
“I was a nervous wreck. I was a nervous wreck. I'm a basket case and I'm overwhelmed with bills, even now because I'm overwhelmed with bills, with things.”
Not only did the Muskins lose their vehicle in the incident, but they have also been accumulating massive hospitalization bills ever since the crash occurred, prompting the creation of a GoFundMe page on their behalf, something that Mrs. Muskin may need more than ever now that her husband has passed.
The two criminal suspects allegedly responsible for the now-fatal collision have been identified as Lorraine Alvarado and Kassandra Alvarez, as the Mail noted, both of whom who have prior records and have served time behind bars.
According to police, just prior to the crash, the duo had robbed a sporting goods store and were being pursued by police as they drove away in a stolen vehicle, with Alvarez behind the wheel.
After slamming into the Muskins, Alvarado tried to flee on foot, even pulling a gun on one of the pursuing officers. The officer returned fire, striking Alvarado, and the suspects were both ultimately taken into custody.
In the words of Assistant Clark County Sheriff Jim Seabock, “the picture is a suspect that has no regard for consequences of her actions,” and those actions, sadly, took the life of an innocent victim.
Mr. Muskin, as the Review-Journal notes, served as a U.S. Army captain in the Second World War and practiced dentistry for many years in New York. In addition to his wife of 67 years, he leaves behind two sons, Drew and Jon.
According to the GoFundMe page established for the benefit of his wife, prior to the accident, Muskin was in good health, so much so that he was still able to drive on his own.
“He was fearless, and it is no surprise to anyone who knows him that he was still going strong at 101 years old,” the page read. “He was somewhat of a local legend and people would recognize him around town and thank him for his service.”
“We're all just very angry at these criminals,” Dr. Muskin's sons explained, adding, “[n]othing we can do about it, and we trust the justice system.” Hopefully that trust is vindicated, and those responsible for the death of a beloved husband, father, and veteran are held fully accountable.