Kindergartner dies after choking on object
A 5-year-old boy choked to death Wednesday afternoon after he swallowed an object while riding a school bus, officials said.
Mayor Nancy Stevens said the boy, whose name was not released Wednesday night, was riding a bus north on Maple Street near the Central Fire Station at 3:30 p.m. when dispatchers received a radio call that a student was choking.
He was taken by paramedics to Marlborough Hospital where - in spite of two hours of emergency medical treatment by paramedics and doctors - he was pronounced dead.
"Emergency personnel and personnel at the hospital did everything they could for this little boy," Stevens said Wednesday night. "This is an unfortunate tragedy. It's been an extremely difficult afternoon."
The boy, a kindergarten student at Francis J. Kane Elementary School, choked on an unknown "foreign object" that was not food, Stevens said.
Kane Principal John Collins referred all comments to Stevens. The mayor said Kane school staff were making calls Wednesday night to faculty and other staff members, notifying them of the death.
Although the school is proceeding with a full school day Thursday, a counseling team will be available to talk with students and adults, Stevens said.
"For students, we think the best thing will be to be at the school," Stevens said.
Stacie Minerella, president of Kane Elementary's Parent Teacher Organization, declined to comment.
Stevens said about 20 to 30 children were on the bus when the student began choking. After the boy was taken to the hospital, Assistant Superintendent Jim Jolicoeur, school nurse Sally Williams and Collins rode on the bus with the other students.
Stevens said the buses, which are contracted to First Student Inc., are equipped with radios allowing the drivers to contact emergency dispatchers when necessary. The radios and the close proximity to the fire station allowed for a quick action, the mayor said.
"The response was extremely fast," she said. "I'm proud of the men and women who work for the city for emergency response. They did everything they could."
Matt Lynch can be reached at 508-490-7453 or email@example.com.
MetroWest Daily News