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School mourns loss of 11-year-old boy killed on I-270

"It is in times of tragedy that we realize how much we need one another"

MARYLAND HEIGHTS, Mo. — Parkway Northeast Middle School sent out a letter to families mourning the loss of a sixth grade student who was hit and killed on Interstate 270 Tuesday morning.

The 11-year-old boy was walking eastbound on the interstate when he stopped in the first lane of traffic, according to a Missouri State Highway Patrol report. A 24-year-old woman driving a Volkswagen Jetta tried to stop but struck the boy.

“As the leader of our school, and as someone who cares deeply for all our children, this is a letter that I never want to write or send to you,” Kevin Martin, principal of Northeast Middle School, said in the letter. “This morning, we learned that we lost the life of a 6th grade scholar, Zaelynn Wiseman, from a terrible automobile accident. Please keep Zaelynn’s family, friends, and loved ones in your thoughts.”

Martin went on to say how difficult it is to know the impact of the news on students while they are in a “virtual environment."

“People respond in different ways to death, and there is no right or wrong way to react,” he said.

The school’s counselors, social worker and care coordinator will be available virtually for students on Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. via Zoom.

“It is in times of tragedy that we realize how much we need one another. I am thankful for our strong, caring community of faculty, staff, parents, and scholars at Northeast Middle,” Martin said.

The Missouri State Highway Patrol said it is unclear why the boy was walking across the interstate. 

After the crash, the driver was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. MSHP said they don’t anticipate charges will be filed against the driver.

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