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Woman pleads for hit-and-run driver to come forward after losing 2nd husband to car crash

Danny Hankins. (Photo courtesy: Aleisha Hankins)

UPDATE 9/25: Leander Police said Tuesday that the suspect vehicle has been located and taken into custody for safekeeping. The suspect is still at large and has not been identified

Further details were not immediately available.

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Clinching onto family photos, Aleisha Hankins remembers how special her husband, Danny Hankins, made her feel and how much joy he brought to their family.

He was her rock.

"He completed something that I didn't think could be filled again,” Aleisha said.

He was also the friend she leaned on after she lost her first husband in a car crash 11 years ago. "[Danny] meant the world to me. He made me laugh. He made it feel safe to cry,” Aleisha said.

Sunday was the anniversary of that crash -- a day she never thought she would re-live. "I'm not a big fan of Sept. 23. It's taken a lot from my family,” Aleisha said.

Now, 11 years later, on the same day, she learned the unimaginable. "I woke up about 2:30, and he wasn't there. I looked out front to see if maybe he had fallen asleep on the couch,” Aleisha said.

Desperate to know where he was, she pinged Danny’s phone and learned he was at St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center. "They told me that he was hit and that the person had left,” Aleisha said.

Minutes before the crash, Danny had texted her to let her know he would be coming back home from a friend’s house in Leander. He never made it back.

Police say they received a call about a crash involving a motorcycle and a pickup truck at the intersection of Palmera Ridge Boulevard and Ronald W. Reagan Boulevard in Leander at 11:57 p.m. According to a witness, the truck turned from Palmera Ridge into the path of the motorcyclist who was traveling southbound on Ronald Reagan, causing the motorcycle to hit the rear of the truck.

The witness said the driver of the truck stopped briefly before leaving the scene, leaving Danny fighting for his life on the road. He died early the next morning.

"It hurts to know that I don't have him anymore,” Aleisha said.

Now, widowed a second time – this time with five kids, including three who belonged to Danny – Aleisha is relying on faith and family for peace. "As much as I want my husband back, there's got to be something good that comes out of this,” Aleisha said.

All she wants is for the driver who fled the accident to come forward. "I don't have any ill. I don't wish anything bad upon you, upon them, I just want to know why you left,” Aleisha said.

Police say the truck involved is believed to be a white or light-colored GMC or Chevrolet pickup truck with a tool box in the back and a work rack that has a frame for carrying construction equipment. The truck should have damage on the back of it, the bumper and the tail lamp.

Anyone with information is encouraged to call Leander police at 512-528-2800.

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