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SEAL BEACH : Hit-and-Run Victim's Memory Honored

June 13, 1995|RUSS LOAR

Residents who were stunned and angered by the hit-and-run death of 12-year-old Christopher Schneider almost a year ago have begun a third campaign in his memory.

The Christopher Committee, formed within days of the boy's death last July, persuaded city officials to lower speed limits near McGaugh Elementary School where he was killed, and lobbied for a state law passed to toughen penalties against unlicensed drivers.

Now the committee members are raising funds to buy instructional materials on safety and a concrete dinosaur for the playground at the school, at 1698 Bolsa Ave.

"We want to remember Chris as the smiling little boy that he was, smiling and laughing and drawing pictures of dinosaurs," said parent Renee Handler, a witness to the accident.

Christopher was killed while waiting to cross the street with his bicycle near the school. A driver whose license had been suspended struck another car, propelling it onto the sidewalk where the boy was standing with his bike.

"This is every parent's worst nightmare," Handler said. "He was doing all of the right things, that's the reason so many parents have been touched by this. No matter how much you try and protect your children, something can happen."

Seal Beach resident Cynthia Kaye Lietz, then 28, was charged with hit-and-run driving and driving with a suspended license. Her trial is pending.

The Christopher Committee is working with residents and local businesses in hope of raising $8,000 for the dinosaur and classroom materials. Information: (310) 598-8283.

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