AN OAP was killed after being struck by a cop car as he carried gifts back home on Christmas Day following the “best day ever” with his family.
Tony Carroll, 70, was remembered as a “kind and generous” friend as the first picture of him was released.
Carroll was killed as the police car drove to an emergency call on Tuesday night.
He reportedly stepped off the pavement onto the road near traffic lights when he was hit.
It is not clear whether the lights were red or green.
Two officers gave first aid and paramedics attended near the Wallasey Tunnel in Liverpool but he could not be saved.
In a statement, his family said: “Tony was a much loved brother and uncle and will be greatly missed by all his family.
“He was always the life and soul of the party, and he lived life the way he wanted to.
“Tony was much loved by all who knew him for his kindness and generosity in the local community.
“As a very close knit family we spent Christmas Day together and as he left told us all that he had had the best day ever.
“This tragedy has devastated all our family and Tony will be remembered in our hearts forever.”
A video from CCTV has surfaced showing Carroll’s final moments.
He strolls along the street, waiting to cross as another car passes, and then steps out just as a police car – with lights flashing – appears in the road.
He spots the car at the final moment, obviously hastening to get out of the vehicle’s way before being struck.
Locals have also paid tribute to the victim, saying he was a “generous” man.
Wez, the owner of Scotland Road Newsagents, told The Mirror: “He was a person who came in here every day. He would give my staff cookies every morning.”
Another added: “I could not say a bad word about him. He was just so friendly.”
After the crash, eye witnesses said they saw a police officer sitting nearby with his head in his hands.
Witness Paul Kirby said: “One of the police was at the guy’s feet on his knees crying while the other tried to cover the guy with his jacket.”
Police officers and paramedics treated the man at the scene but he was pronounced dead in hospital a short time later.
An investigation has now been launched and the incident has been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.
The man’s next of kin have been notified.
At the time of the crash, a Merseyside Police spokesperson said: “We can confirm an investigation is currently under way following a fatal road traffic collision in Liverpool this evening, Tuesday, 25th December.
“At around 6.50pm, a collision occurred between a police vehicle and a male pedestrian on Scotland Road.
“Emergency services attended and the pedestrian was taken to hospital where he was sadly pronounced dead.
“Enquiries are ongoing to identify him and inform his next of kin.”
An IOPC spokesman said: “Merseyside Police has referred to us a fatal collision involving a police car and a pedestrian on Scotland Road in Liverpool.
“We have sent investigators to the scene.
“Following a brief assessment, we have decided to carry out an independent investigation.”