Keyport family thanks emergency responders for lifesaving actions


KEYPORT – A family in Keyport is thanking the emergency responders who saved them after a motorist veered off the roadway and onto a borough sidewalk, striking a grandmother and her two young grandchildren.

During a meeting of the Borough Council on May 7, Olivia Lopes thanked emergency responders in Keyport for saving the lives of her son LJ, 1; her nephew, Auggie Brinkley, 4; and her mother, Deborah Triano, who were struck by an oncoming vehicle during the afternoon of Jan. 8 in Keyport.

Police Chief Mark Hafner prefaced Lopes’ remarks by saying, “The two small children and one adult were initially rendered unconscious and suffered extensive and serious injuries. If it were not for the quick response of emergency responders and all of the officers involved, the outcome surely would have been different.”

Reading from a written statement, Lopes, who was accompanied by her husband, son, nephew and mother, said, “All three pedestrians … are all doing OK. They are on the mend thanks to the amazing doctors, nurses and therapists we have encountered over the past few months. However, none of this would have been possible without the quick action of first responders from our beloved town of Keyport.

“I’m at a loss for words at how to thank you all because words can never be enough. Let me just start by saying ‘thank you’… Some of you I know personally, and are just like family to me. I could only imagine how hard this was on you … I can only imagine how this call was so much more different for you, knowing the faces of the victims all too well,” Lopes said.

Lopes individually thanked emergency responders for their lifesaving actions. She expressed gratitude toward the responders who she said were present at Jersey Shore University Medical Center, Neptune, to visit her family members during their recoveries. 

“I want to thank you as a citizen of Keyport, as a daughter of a mother who was just injured in a tragic accident. Thank you as an aunt who had to watch her nephew go through multiple surgeries and learn how to walk again. And mostly, thank you as a mother. I had to watch my son battle for his life … He would not have gotten that chance if it weren’t for you,” Lopes said.

In an interview after the meeting, Lopes said her mother – who remains in a walking cast – was pulling a wagon with LJ and Auggie inside when a motorist struck the family on a borough sidewalk.

Following his discharge from the hospital, Lopes said her nephew, Auggie, is “very excited” to continue participation in physical education classes at his school.

Lopes said LJ returned home from the hospital on April 8. LJ will continue physical occupational, and speech therapy in the meantime, she said. 

When questioned about the nature of the charges which could be presented to the motorist who struck her family members, Lopes said the family is “still waiting” on that information.