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Family says man killed after being hit by vehicle was a "big teddy bear"

Posted: 5:42 PM, Dec 10, 2017
Updated: 2017-12-10 18:43:46-05

GLADSTONE, Mo. -- Police are still investigating a Gladstone man's death early Saturday morning. 

Just one day after losing her son Ryan, Mary Rossiter and her family sat down with 41 Action News to tell his story. 

"You never think you're going to bury your children," Rossiter said. 

Ryan Rossiter, 24, had just moved back to Kansas City a week ago. 
 
According to his family, police say a drunk driver struck and killed him as he walked home from work along Route 1 in Gladstone early Saturday morning. 

Police say multiple people were in the car and they left Ryan on the side of the highway.  He was dead when police arrived to the scene. 

"He was just a loving boy. He was high-functioning autistic, so he could work. He was just a big ol' teddy bear. He had so many dreams and so many things to accomplish," Rossiter said through tears. 

Ryan was obsessed with wrestling and had aspirations to become a professional wrestler. 

"John Cena was his idol," Rossiter said. 

Ryan's brother Corey says he didn't even get to see Ryan since he came back. 

"I was his big brother, even though I was two feet shorter than him. He was really proud of me," Corey said. 

Having just buried their father three years ago, the family says Ryan's death is unbearable. 

"I just want people to realize that drinking and driving is not an option. It shouldn't be done. When you take someone's life, you can't replace that," Ryan's older sister, Stephanie, said. 

Police say they questioned one person and are working to build a case.

"I have had to fight for this boy his whole life and I will fight for justice for my son," Rossiter said. 

Rossiter says she forgives whoever killed her son. 

She says Ryan wanted a family and had moved back to Kansas City to be with his girlfriend and her children, whom he treated as his own. 

"It's sad that he only got 24 years on this Earth. I just hope he's up there with my dad and my uncle at peace," Corey said. 

The family is struggling to pay for a funeral and burial and set up a GoFundMe page to help with expenses.