THOMPSON, Conn. (WTNH) — “The fender hit my leg and I jump like that and ended up on the hood of the car,” 71-year-old Rocky Navarro said, remembering the moment he was hit by a car outside Mary R Fisher Elementary School on Monday.
Navarro said a car swerved out of the drop off line and toward the crosswalk where the children were walking. He said he stepped in to stop it when he was hit.
Connecticut State Police believe the car was driven by 31-year-old Jason Beshaw — a parent whose child attends the school.
After being hit, Navarro said Beshaw jumped out of the car and started to beat him.
“He jumped out of the car, grabs me…he is 6 foot something and 285 pounds…and then pops me. It was just like hitting a stone wall.”
Watch: Full interview with Rocky Navarro
Several mothers stepped in to stop Beshaw, while others ran for help.
Navarro has been a crossing guard at the school for more than 20 years, and he’s been on the fire department for 55 years.
Some said he’s a pillar of the community, adding they have no idea why this happened to him.
“I have been on the school board for 18 years, and I have heard all kinds of stories but never anything like this, never,” said Chairman Bill Witkowski.
As part of their investigation, troopers are going over surveillance video from outside of the school.
“It came so fast, even the trooper said, ‘I watch that on camera, it was like one, two, three…bang. You got clipped. You got hit. Pow, pow. You were on the ground.”
Beshaw was arrested and is facing several charges including assault on an elderly victim and reckless endangerment.
While school officials are left to deal with the effect this will have on the students that saw it, Navarro said he won’t let it stop him from getting back out there and doing what he loves: his job protecting those kids.