Children being hit by cars: Matt's Memo

Lucas Delong (Family photo)

I was backing out of my driveway this afternoon, slowly. I checked the mirrors, the rear view camera and then out the driver side window. That's when I saw one of my 8 year old neighbors on his lime green bicycle. I stopped. So did he. He is a bright boy.

My wife happened to be in our driveway. I asked her to keep an on the boy as I backed out. My window rolled down I said hello to him and inched out of the driveway. I then told him I loved the color of his bike. Everyone was safe and sound.

That is not how events have unfolded at other locations this week when it comes to children and vehicles. In Lysander, Utica, Salina and Syracuse four different children have been struck and injured. Three of them died. It is hard to believe how many in a short period that we have reported on the news. And, remember back to Memorial Day weekend when a two year old little girl was playing on the sidewalk on Delaware Avenue when she was hit and killed by a speeding driver.

As I post this blog tonight, we do not know the name of the 7 year old killed this evening in Syracuse. The people who live on his street know who it is and are feeling the raw pain of loss. We do know 13 year old Lucas Delong. He was supposed to attend Durgee Junior High next month. Instead family and friends will attend his calling hours and funeral on Sunday.

Police have said there was nothing different to be done by the driver of the minivan who struck Lucas. Same was said about the driver who hit the 6 year old in Salina late this afternoon. She survived. The driver in Utica was slowly backing out of the driveway. We do not yet know if driver fault is part of the deadly collision on West Onondaga Street at dinner time.

The movement of children can be hard to predict. They don't always know where their next move will take them. Parents should teach them to be careful. And all of us drivers slow it down, look ahead and assume any child you see may make a move in front of your car.

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