Society

Falling TV Kills 8-Year-Old At Afterschool Program, Classmate Says ‘Nobody Was Really Looking’

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

An 8-year-old Massachusetts boy died Thursday after a television set fell on him at an afterschool program.

Colby O’Brien was reportedly sitting with his twin sister watching “Toy Story 2” at Elm Street Elementary School in Gardner.

It is unclear how the television set fell on Colby. One parent said the school uses “big, old-fashioned boxy sets placed on tall metal carts.”

It is unclear whether the TV set was strapped onto the cart or not. The office of Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr. declined to release any more details about the death.

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One of Colby’s classmates, Brandon Comley, told the Boston Globe no one was watching the children when the accident took place.

“Nobody was really looking,” the 9-year-old said. “They just heard a bang and then saw Colby with the TV on top of him on the floor.”

The boy’s twin sister was back at school on Friday.

“She didn’t talk to anybody and was sad and cried,” Brandon told The Globe. “My whole class cried.”

Mourners have been leaving bouquets, candles, cards and stuffed animals at the school in the boy’s memory.

“A tragedy like this hits the whole community,” said Shirley Atkinson, 52, who cried as she placed a teddy bear at the school.

Some parents are collecting donations for O’Brien’s mother, Jolene, on the website Go Fund Me. They had raised more than $6,700 Saturday afternoon.

Sources: Daily Mail, Boston Globe