Parents of Kyle Plush, Ohio Teen Crushed in Van, Say It's 'Really Hard' to Go On Without Him

Kyle Plush's parents
Pool

The parents of Kyle Plush, the teen who died after becoming trapped in the back of his own van, are calling for changes to emergency response systems across the U.S.

Sixteen-year-old Kyle frantically called 911 and pleaded for help after getting stuck inside his Honda Odyssey on April 10, but authorities in Cincinnati, Ohio, could not find the vehicle in time.

"I probably don't have much time left, so tell my mom that I love her if I die," he said in a heart-wrenching 911 call.

Authorities said they were not able to locate his van. Hours later, Kyle was found dead by his own father, Ron Plush, who had gone looking for him after he never returned home.

Months after his death, Kyle's parents are highlighting the need for better technology to help first responders locate those in need. 

"The process has to be the best — the technology has to be the best," Ron Plush told NBC News, adding that when a "life is in danger, you need that immediate response."

Kyle died after reaching over the back of the seat for his tennis gear, which was in the trunk. The car's seat flipped backwards under the weight of his body and he was pinned upside down beneath the seat.

"If you met Kyle, he was just an unforgettable kid," his mother, Jill Plush, told NBC News. "He always had a smile on his face, he was always friendly to people that he would walk by, he had a larger-than-life personality."

She added, "We went through a lot together, and it's really hard ... to go on every day without him."

Cincinnati officials have pledged to "do better" in the wake of Kyle's death. A preliminary report released in May found that problems in the response included inadequate supervision at the emergency communications center and the apparent inability of 911 officers to hear Kyle when he said his condition was serious.

Police Chief Eliot Isaac said the officers and the operators followed standard operating procedures.

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