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Two Men Killed While Helping Injured Dog

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Two men in Phoenix, Arizona, were killed after being struck by a car while trying to help an injured dog, reports Fox affiliate KSAZ News. Nooraly Lalji and John Wintersteen were tending to a pup when they were hit by a Lexus RX. Subsequently, another car drove over at least one of them.

Injured dog, along with two men, died in chaotic accident

Lalji was driving his Mercedez Benz when his car hit the dog. He then exited the vehicle to help the wounded canine. After a while, Wintersteen, who lived in the neighborhood, stepped out of his home to tend to the pup. That’s when the two were hit by an oncoming car.

Following the accident, both men were rushed to a local hospital, where they passed away. The dog did not survive either. The two drivers who struck the men remained at the scene and cooperated with the authorities. According to police, impairment did not contribute to the accident. The investigation is currently ongoing.

Wintersteen, who was 78 years old, served as a Paradise Valley police chief from 1995 to 2009. Clarkdale Police Department Chief Randy Taylor said Wintersteen was someone who “chose service above self.”

“As a leader, he was hands-on. He wouldn’t ask anything of his staff he wouldn’t do himself,” Taylor added. “He was, in my mind, very charismatic. You could tell he was a career military person.”

Taylor further described Wintersteen as “a genuine, caring, considerate person.” Continuing, he shared, “Unfortunately, he left way, way too early.”

Following the former officer’s death, the Paradise Valley Police Department released a statement. “Chief Wintersteen served our town honorably from 1995 to 2009, leaving a lasting impact on both the Police Department and the community,” it reads in part.

The statement noted that Wintersteen also worked as an Executive Board Member for the Boy Scouts of America. In addition, he helped organize the town’s Martin Luther King Day events for more than 20 years.

“Chief Wintersteen’s legacy is woven into the fabric of our department, and we will miss him dearly,” the statement added.

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