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Woman killed in Dallas hit-and-run had helped 'thousands' in substance recovery, family says

"I'm not damning or wanting vengeance but people should pay for the energy they put out," said Yamil Little to the driver who drove off after striking his mother.

DALLAS — Tyrome Lewis' last fond memory of his good friend Portia Dickens was at her birthday party a few weeks ago. 

It was a surprise party he and a few friends organized for the 71-year-old. He's holding on to those good memories for as long as he can in light of the tragedy that recently happened: Portia was struck and killed on the road and the driver drove off without rendering aid.

"Love, compassion, empathy, these are the things that could prevent situations how she passed," said her son Yamil Little. Little was wearing a crown during an interview with WFAA because Portia always said she raised kings and queens. Portia lived in Sacramento, California but as of May had been in the Dallas-Fort Worth area visiting. 

"On July 8, 2022, at approximately 9:34 p.m., the suspect vehicle was traveling northbound on 13400 Esperanza Road and struck a pedestrian, resulting in their death. The suspect vehicle fled the scene without stopping to render aid. The vehicle was last seen traveling eastbound on Midpark Road," read a press release from DPD.

Little tells WFAA his mother was proudly 36 years clean and sober and a sponsor to so many people fighting addiction.

"She came here just visiting and got nine sponsees," said Lewis, a good friend.

If Tyrome were to put a number on it, Portia must have helped "thousands" of people in recovery or trapped in addiction. He's now hoping somebody will help solve who hit her. The Dallas Police Department has released pictures of the brownish-gray SUV that struck Dickens, it has major dents on the front side of the vehicle.

"I'm not damning or wanting vengeance but people should pay for the energy they put out," said Little.

Friends tell us Portia had just attended a meeting that night as a sponsor. Nobody heard from her after that. But friends and family says stories of her work and impact will continue to be told long after.

"Just when you think you've found somebody to help you through your problems somebody takes her away. Nobody should have to deal with this type of pain," said Lewis.

Anyone with information on this vehicle or this offense is encouraged to call Detective R. Rodriguez #8502 via phone at (214) 671-0011 or via email at Ricardo.rodriguez2@dallascityhall.com.  Please reference case number 123266-2022.

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