HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Zachary Jackson was a 38-year-old tattoo artist working on turning his life around.
"If he wasn't my son, I would have liked him to be my friend," said his mother Irene Jackson.
Though investigators haven't confirmed, she knows her son was the one killed in a hit-and-run crash on the Eastex freeway Sunday morning. He was fixing a faulty wheel on the edge of the feeder road when a silver SUV hit and killed him.
READ MORE: Man killed after hit-and-run while changing tire on Eastex Freeway
A woman he was with was also injured.
"He was a good son," said Jackson. "A very good son."
Investigators found a cross he always wore at the site of the crash. Now, Jackson and her extended family want answers. They want the man or woman who hit him to come forward.
"We all make mistakes, but my son was a human being and he deserves justice," said Jackson.
"We want you to turn yourself in and do the man thing that you're supposed to do," said Zachary's aunt Anna Castillo, hoping the unidentified driver hears her plea. "We want justice for my nephew because, they didn't deserve to leave him like that. They left him like he was a dog in the street."
Zachary was known as Flaco, which is Spanish for skinny or thin. He is not the first hit-and-run victim in the family, according to his mother and aunt. A drunk driver hit Zachary's uncle, Guillermo Castillo, and left him to die in a parking lot in 2001.
The family told ABC13 he lingered for a month before passing away.
"We had a brother killed already once by a drunk driver," said Anna. "Now, we're dealing with this one with our nephew. It's not good. We've been through this. It's not fun."
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Family of hit-and-run victim: 'They left him like he was a dog in the street'