Apollo Beach, Florida -- A Ruskin man who survived multiple tours of duty overseas died while helping strangers on US-41 in Apollo Beach.
That stretch of road is dark and dangerous with no shoulder and no lights along the side. Florida Highway Patrol authorities say 32-year-old Chad Ries stopped in the road when he saw some other people in need of help. That's when a passing car hit and killed him.
Extended family member Don Sarrica says, "He always helped everybody out. Always treated everyone fair, went out of his way, even if he didn't know them."
Ries leaves behind a wife and two children under the age of five. In a phone interview from Ohio, his family says he survived multiple tours of duty in Iraq and this loss, just miles from his home, makes no sense.
"He is an outstanding individual -- come back from that, finished up college, great job, gets married, two kids. Then poof," says Sarrica.
Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash. No charges have been released; we are told they are pending.
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