Treyon Ferguson was trying to get home on time.

"He was like the big brother," his mother, Tanika Ferguson, said yesterday. "Even though he was 8 and his brother [Taveon] was 9, he was like the older brother."

Treyon and Taveon were playing at a friend's house just across the Prince George's County border with the District and were on their way home to the 300 block of 63rd Street NE about 6:15 p.m. for dinner and to meet their mother's 6:30 p.m. weekend curfew.

Minutes from home, they crossed Burgundy Street in the 5800 block and Treyon was struck by a vehicle. It slowed, Taveon told his mother, but did not stop.

Taveon ran home for help.

"We got in my sister's car and went over there, and he was lying in the street," his mother said. "His shoes were 25 or 50 feet from where he was lying in the street. So he must have went up into the air. The driver had to know that he hit a little boy, but he kept going."

Treyon was pronounced dead at Prince George's Hospital Center. Police said they believe he was hit by a sport-utility vehicle that might have sustained damage to the right front headlight.

Treyon was in third grade at Drew Elementary School in the 5600 block of Eads Street in Northeast Washington. His favorite subject was math.

Selina Knight, Treyon's aunt, said the stretch of Burgundy Street where her nephew was struck was "real dark" and had no streetlight. The boys were walking in the street, their mother said, to avoid snow on the sidewalks.

Treyon was popular in the neighborhood.

"He was a leader," his mother said, "not a follower. He had many, many friends. He had friends up to 13 years old wanting to hang with him. I had girls knocking on my door asking if he could come and play. He was very popular."

He loved to play basketball at the playground, his family said. His favorite player was Michael Jordan, and he frequently wore a Jordan jersey.

Treyon couldn't make up his mind whether he wanted to be a boxer, a rapper or an actor when he grew up. Lately, he was leaning toward being an actor.

"There was no telling what that boy was going to be," his mother said. "He was going to be known, though. He wasn't going to be quiet."

Police were investigating the accident yesterday. Relatives took Taveon to church and were trying to help him cope with witnessing the death of his younger brother. Treyon also had two sisters, TeMera, 6 months, and Tearra, 2.

Tanika Ferguson said she spoke with Taveon when she got home from the hospital Saturday night.

"I told him his brother wasn't coming back," she said. "I asked him if he knew what death meant and he said: 'God took my brother. Why can't God bring him back? If He is supposed to have all these powers, why can't He bring him back?' And I told him I can't understand that myself. I can't even explain that."

Treyon Ferguson, 8, was struck and killed in Prince George's County on Saturday evening while walking home with his older brother.