SAN CLEMENTE (CBSLA.com) — The family of a boy killed at last weekend’s Baja 500 off-road race in Ensenada, Mexico is sending out a message of forgiveness to a race truck driver who crashed into spectators.
Eight year old Xander Hendiks of San Clemente was killed just after the race started Saturday morning, when driver Todd Pedersen lost control of his vehicle.READ MORE: Jo Lasorda, Wife Of Dodgers Great Tommy Lasodra, Passes Away At 91
The accident was recorded on video.
“It’s hard to imagine tomorrow and the next day and the next day waking up without him in our family,” said Melissa Hendriks, Xander’s mother. “It’s an incredible loss and it’s not a hole that will ever be filled but it’s encouraging to know that we will see him again in heaven.”
Melissa Hendriks is recovering from head and leg injuries she suffered in the accident that killed her son.
“The driver stepped forward and said I am so very very sorry. I am so sorry,” said Brandon Hendriks, Xander’s father.
Brandon Hendriks is a pastor at Pacific Coast Church in San Clemente.
He says he embraced the driver at a hospital after the accident.READ MORE: WATCH: A Sneak Peek Of The Highly-Anticipated Academy Museum
“I wrapped my arm around him and prayed he would be able to find the forgiveness and love and grace of God that I have,” said Hendriks. “I said ‘I’ve been forgiven of things that I’ve done on purpose. You didn’t do this with malice or ill-intent.'”
Xander Hendriks was one of three people who died over the weekend at the race.
Two motorcycle racers were killed in separate incidents.
The Hendriks family set up a GoFundMe page to cover medical and funeral expenses.
On that page, they later announced that those expenses have been covered by an anonymous donor.
The family said they will continue to accept donations to cover grief counseling, physical therapy and to help the family recover.
A celebration of life service for Xander Hendriks will be held Saturday at Pacific Coast Church in San Clemente.MORE NEWS: Driver Killed, 5 Injured In El Monte Shooting, Crash