A 7-year-old boy was struck and killed by a school bus in Park Forest, Illinois, on January 20. According to Park Forest Police, the bus was owned by Kickert Bus Company and was transporting students from Park Forest-Chicago Heights School District 163 at about 3:13 p.m. when the accident happened.
NBC 5 Chicago reported that the student was identified by the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office as Connor Kaczmarski. He attended Mohawk Primary Center. Kaczmarski's family members were present at the scene and started lifesaving measures before first responders arrived. He was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
Park Forest police are still investigating after Connor Kaczmarski, 7, was hit and killed by a school bus driver.— WGN Morning News (@WGNMorningNews) January 21, 2023
What neighbors, police are saying ->> https://t.co/i5UesUgOZD pic.twitter.com/r9awvZmoP4
The school district and police department made grief counselors available to students over the weekend and at the start of the school week.
The district released a statement saying in part, "[Connor] was a joy to all of his teachers, kind-hearted, smart and funny; always with a smile on his face. He will be missed greatly by the Mohawk and District 163 students and educators. Our entire school district is saddened by this tragic event."
Park Forest Police reported that the school bus driver and witnesses were interviewed by investigators. At the time of the department's press release, it was not known whether the driver would be facing any charges. The investigation is being led by the Park Forest Police Department and the Suburban Major Accident Reconstruction Team.
School Bus Fleet reached out to Cook-Illinois, which owns Kickert Bus Company, for a statement. An official for Cook-Illinois said they cannot make a comment since the accident is under investigation.