Good Samaritan gives chilling details in Newburgh tragedy
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NEWBURGH, N.Y. -- "He was a very courageous, very intelligent little boy."
The Good Samaritan who helped 10-year-old La'Shaun Armstrong who escaped a sinking minivan as his mother and three siblings drowned is giving us some more insight into the tragedy.
Meave Ryan was driving past the boat ramp in Newburgh Tuesday night when she saw the little boy, soaking wet and waving his arms. She took him to the nearby fire department and stayed with him while he took police to the spot where the vehicle went into the water.
The boy told Ryan that his mother, Lashanda Armstrong, 25, had a fight with his stepfather and that she piled the four children into the minivan and drove into the river.
Armstrong apparently told the children, "You're all going to die with me." As the vehicle sank, La'Shaun broke free of his mother's grasp and was able to climb out a window. He said he heard his mother say that she made a mistake and she tried to put the vehicle in reverse, but it was too late.
Ryan said, "He was talking about how he was teaching his little baby sister how to walk. She was turning one in two weeks. And he was talking about regretting not teaching his brothers how to swim. He just learned last summer with his aunt, and he was blaming himself to what happened to his two brothers. And I said, you can't blame yourself. It's not your fault."
La'Shaun told Meave that his mom went crazy because his stepfather cheated on her.