Woman donates car to student struck by hit-and-run driver while walking 15 miles home

Branden Whitehead, who was seriously injured by a hit and run driver while walking 15 miles home from his Georgia college classes, may never have to make the journey by foot again thanks to a local woman inspired by his story.

Whitehead, 20, told that the 15-mile trek to and from West Georgia Technical College typically took him close to 5 hours to complete. Thanks to Vanessa Peebles, the commute will now only take him about 15 minutes.

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Peebles donated her 1990 Cadillac Fleetwood after learning about Whitehead's accident, which police are still investigating as they search for a possible suspect.

"The thought of my kid walking, I don't even want to think about it. So I said nope, that's it, end of story he's going to get this car," Peebles told

Whitehead, who has dreams of becoming a surgical tech, said the gift has made a "big difference."

Whitehead believes his bag, which was crammed with heavy books, may have saved his life as it took the brunt of the impact.

Peebles said the car is his on one condition; he has to continue to do well in his studies.

"I'm thankful to be alive," he said, "and that makes me want to go to school even more."

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