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Boy struck by car in Sunny Isles by red-light runner declared brain-dead

An 11-year-old boy was crossing Sunny Isles Blvd with his sister when he was struck by a car that ran a red light.
An 11-year-old boy was crossing Sunny Isles Blvd with his sister when he was struck by a car that ran a red light.

SUNNY ISLES BEACH, Fla. – The family of an 11-year-old boy hit by a car two weeks ago say his injures are too severe to save him after doctors have declared him brain-dead.

Anthony Reznik was crossing the street in a marked walk near 300 Sunny Isles Boulevard on Feb. 10 when a car ran a red light and hit him while he was crossing the street with his older sister. His mother said the two were crossing the street to go to the CVS store across the street from where they live.

He was airlifted to Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital suffering from head injuries in critical condition.

Anthony’s parents said he would have turned 12 in a few months and that he was an incredible athlete. On Wednesday, doctors said that the boy was brain-dead.

“Every single day, we were hoping so much, we never lost hope,” Inna Trakhtenberg, Anthony’s mother, said.

“Even though he lived a very short life, his death made a huge impact for so many people,” Mark Reznik, Anthony’s father, said.

Before he was to be taken off of life support, his parents made one more decision — to help save the lives of other children.

“We decided that this healthy boy can help and save lives of other kids . . . it looks like seven lives and it is very important for our daughter, his older sister as well, because she sees him as a hero,” Reznik said.

“Even with Anthony going to a different world, we’re still helping people and I’m proud of it,” Trakhtenberg said. “I guess he’s a miracle, but somewhere else.”

The couple say they are numb having just had one more chance to say goodbye to their son. “It’s not even pain,” Trakhtenberg said. “I thank God for the feeling of numbness, because if it weren’t for numbness, no words can describe.”

Local 10 went to the scene Wednesday night and took video at the same crosswalk. In about a half hour, we saw 6 cars run the same red light.

City leaders acknowledged that it is a confusing spot for drivers, but they said they are going to be cracking down on those who aren’t following the rules.

A memorial near the scene of the tragedy continues to grow for the boy. On Wednesday night, flowers and cards lined the area.

“It’s just unfortunate that someone was reckless driving, on a solid red,” Reznik said.

The driver who hit the boy remained at the scene the night of the accident police said. No charges have been filed at this point, however the crash is still under investigation.

A petition has gathered nearly 2,500 signatures seeking to rename Sunny Isles Boulevard to Anthony Reznik Boulevard in memory of the 11-year-old boy. The Rezniks said it was started by someone they don’t even know.

About the Authors:

Ian Margol joined the Local 10 News team in July 2016 as a general assignment reporter. Born in Miami Beach and raised in Broward County, Ian is thrilled to be back home in South Florida.

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local 10.com.