Parents of victim in fatal hit-and-run asking driver to step forward

Troopers: Suspect driving silver truck or SUV still at large

Parents of victim in fatal hit-and-run asking driver to step forward

HUBERT, ONSLOW COUNTY - The parents of a man killed in an Onslow County hit-and-run on New Year's Eve are asking the driver to come forward.

"He was a person who was liked by everyone. He's going to be missed by everyone," said Earl Dupey Sr. of his son, 30-year-old Earl Dupey (pictured above). "I hope the person who did this is found and prosecuted to the fullest extent."

According to the Highway Patrol, Dupey was walking near Highway 24 in Hubert, about a half a mile from Hubert Boulevard, when he was hit just after 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Family members said Dupey was first taken to Onslow Memorial Hospital. He was then airlifted to New Hanover Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, troopers said.

"It's no good news when you're hearing somebody you loved passed and is gone," said Dupey's father. "It's no good news. It's a bad feeling."

Dupey was walking home from a friend's house, according to his mother, Ycola. His sister was en route to come pick him up when he was hit.

"[He] definitely didn't deserve to be hit. And then people take off, and don't even bother... don't even bother to make the effort," said the victim's childhood friend, Phillip Schutlz.

Schultz described Dupey as one who always cared about his friends and family.

"He just had a lot of energy," Schultz said. "He was the 'life of the party' kind of guy. He was my oldest friend in the world, so he meant a lot."

Schultz said one of his New Year's resolutions is to remember his childhood companion.

"I'm going to do everything I can to help the Dupeys out-- whenever, however, I can lend a hand," Schultz said.

Troopers said the suspect in the hit-and-run was driving a dark silver GMC or Chevy truck. Anyone with information is asked to call Onslow County Crime Stoppers at 910-938-3273, Highway Patrol Communication at 800-334-7411, or the Onslow County Highway Patrol office at 910-862-3134.

Dupey's funeral is scheduled for Jan. 8, his family said. He will then be buried at a family cemetery in Rice, Va.

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