6-Year-Old Killed by School Bus in Maine While Riding Bicycle

Zachary Stieber
By Zachary Stieber
May 2, 2019USshare
6-Year-Old Killed by School Bus in Maine While Riding Bicycle
Stock image of a school bus. (Michael Schueller/Pixabay)

A 6-year-old boy was struck and killed by a school bus in Maine after falling off of his bicycle, authorities said.

The first-grader at Rumford Elementary School was riding his bike on Essex Avenue in Rumford.

As the bus came around a corner, the boy came off the sidewalk into the intersection. He attempted to brake but he and the bicycle fell into the road and he was hit by a rear tire, Rumford Police Chief Stacy Carter said in a press release.

A picture published by the Rumford Falls Times showed a bicycle on its side in the middle of the road and the school bus parked next to it. There was police tape across the intersection and multiple first responders on the scene as area residents stood nearby.

Posted by Rumford Falls Times on Wednesday, May 1, 2019

There were four students on board the bus when it struck the boy, officials said. Rumford resident Carol Pyatt said that her grandson was one of them.

“[My grandson] didn’t know whether to cry or what to do. He was just devastated with the whole thing,” she told NBC. “[He and the victim] spent sleepovers together, went to the park together, had dinners together. And now, [my grandson] feels like the world just ended.”

Officials didn’t identify the victim but a memorial set up near where the death occurred included a sign that read, “In Loving Memory of Jace Holt.”

People who live in the area said that many children play in the street because the homes don’t have much yard space.

Sunnie, another resident, said drivers need to slow down.

“It’s summertime—the kids are out, they finally get used to their bikes that they just got for Christmas and things like that. It’s outside stuff. And I just feel like people need to be more cautious,” she said.

Another resident, Kaylee Hagan, said that what happened was frightening.

“It was scary to even see. I have a little one. I can only imagine that being my child. The whole community got here so quick,” she told WGME.

“You feel good knowing there’s so much community support, but at the same time you see kids in pain, their best friend, their cousin, the brother, they can’t hold them anymore. And it really hits home when you have a family, children. It’s just a sad day.”

RES families, it is with great sadness that I let you know that one of our students passed away this afternoon after an…

Posted by Rumford Elementary School on Wednesday, May 1, 2019

In a statement, Regional School Unit 10 Superintendent Deborah Alden alerted the school community of what happened.

“This afternoon, a first-grader at Rumford Elementary School was in an accident involving one of our buses. Tragically, the student has passed away. Our entire RSU 10 community is grieving this loss,” she said. “We will have counselors available at our Mountain Valley schools on Thursday. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family.”

Rumford Elementary School Principal Jill Bartash posted a statement on the school’s Facebook page, saying classes would still take place on Thursday but that counselors would be at the school for students and staff.

“We know that the days ahead will be difficult for our entire community,” Bartash said. “Know that all staff will work to support kiddos in the days ahead.”

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