SHEBOYGAN -- Sheboygan police said a 9-year-old boy died as a result of injuries suffered after a crash involving a City of Sheboygan garbage truck on Wednesday morning, Oct. 9. The incident happened just before 10:30 a.m. near 14th and Center in Sheboygan. Officials said the child was on a bicycle at the time -- on his way to school.
"Very heartbreaking," said Carlos Jaime, neighbor.
Sheboygan County sheriff's officials said the driver of the garbage truck was a 35-year-old man who has been with the City of Sheboygan for two years. An additional city employee, a 55-year-old man who has been with the City of Sheboygan for approximately 21 years was conducting garbage collection at the rear of the truck.
Officials described the scene -- saying the truck was northbound on 14th Street and preparing to turn right onto Center. The boy was on his bicycle on the sidewalk -- also northbound -- when the impact happened.
"It's a very sad day in the City of Sheboygan -- and really impacts the entire community," said Sheboygan Police Chief Christopher Domagalski. "The city offers its condolences to the family and everyone else who is impacted."
It wasn't immediately clear whether the employees saw the boy. They would be questioned by the Wisconsin State Patrol -- handling the investigation. Meanwhile, officials said counseling would be offered to them.
"I feel for the parents, that's for sure," said Ken Winter. "This is the end result of a bad day for everyone involved."
Police requested that drivers avoid the area, with the intersection expected to be closed for several hours due to the investigation.
Officials said they were also working with administrators at the boy's school to make sure students had the resources they need. Administrators at St. Paul Lutheran School issued this statement:
"We have been notified that the child who died as a result of injuries sustained in the accident involving a City of Sheboygan Sanitation Vehicle was one of our students. We are heartbroken by this loss to our school family. He was a kind, smart and fun-loving boy who loved his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We will miss him immensely, but rejoice in the knowledge that he is at peace with his Heavenly Father. Our school and church family at St. Paul’s grieves with his family, friends and loved ones. We appreciate the community’s concern and outpouring of love and thank God for the time that we did have with him. We appreciate your concern for us and have no further comment."