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Technology helps father attend memorial for boy killed by out-of-control car

July 25, 2014 Updated: July 25, 2014 at 9:02 pm
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Heidi Hameed, left, talks to her husband, Raphael Hameed, on a video call from the hospital after a memorial service for their son, Ishaq Hameed, 5, who was killed when he was hit by a car when walking with his father. Ishaq's father, who was seriously injured in the same crash, attended the service via video. Michael Ciaglo, The Gazette

Raphael Hameed spoke from a hospital bed, but his voice could be heard via Skype in a dimly lit chapel across town.

He spoke to a crowd gathered around his son's ashes.

"Your children are the best of you. Do not take them for granted," he said.

On Friday, Hameed watched from miles away as his wife led a memorial service for their son, Ishaq, who was killed July 8 when a car careened off the road as Hameed walked Ishaq home from the library.

The boy, 5 and on the verge of kindergarten, died there at Murray Boulevard and Bijou Street.

Bystanders tied a tourniquet around Hameed's leg, which was almost completely severed. Doctors amputated the limb below his knee, and he remains bedridden with fractures along most of the right side of his body.

But he is awake and can talk. His wife, Heidi Hameed, told him of Ishaq's death the moment that he regained consciousness in Memorial Hospital. A stay-at-home dad, he had spent almost every minute of the day with Ishaq, their only child together.

"I know what's important, and I gave it all I had," Raphael Hameed said.

As they talked, Xyrjah Goldston, whom police suspect lost control of a BMW as it went onto the sidewalk at more than 50 mph, remained out of El Paso County jail on $10,000 bond, said El Paso County sheriff's Sgt. Greg White.

But Ishaq's mother never mentioned the crash in her eulogy on Friday.

She talked about her son's name - "Ishaq, as you can see, means child of laughter" - and showed pictures to prove her point, chuckling at a boy with big cheeks and a wide smile.

He was born in Los Angeles, spent time in Paradise, Calif., and lived in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, before coming to Colorado Springs in 2011.

For years in California, the family lived in a motel. Here, they spent six months at the Salvation Army's R.J. Montgomery homeless shelter before moving into a small apartment. All the while, in those endless hours at the shelter, his parents tried to teach Ishaq to read and write.

Ishaq oozed intelligence - he loved the planets, listing them off, describing the girth of Jupiter and the icy rings of Saturn. The night before the service, Heidi Hameed gushed about his love for the stars.

"Every time I think of Ish, I know he's up there telling God about the planets like he created them," Heidi Hameed had said.

Raphael Hameed, drawing Friday's service to a close, offered a few last words from that small computer screen.

"I love you all," he said to the mourners. "Thank you."

He paused.

"Thank you, Heidi."

"You're welcome, sweetheart," she replied.

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