6-year-old killed when mom swerves to avoid deer, crashes into tree

A Lower Burrell, Pennsylvania, community is mourning after a 6-year-old boy was killed and his mother was injured in a crash in Lower Burrell Thursday morning.

The medical examiner identified the child as Isaac Thomas. According to authorities, Isaac and his mom, Amber Kindler, were traveling along on Spooky Hollow Road around 8 a.m. when Kindler swerved to miss a deer. The Jeep Cherokee rolled on its side and came to rest against a tree.

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A neighbor who rushed to the scene to help told WPXI that he was able to free Kindler and Isaac from the Jeep before emergency crews arrived.

"I kept saying, 'I'm not hurt. I don't care. I just want my baby. Where is my son? Is he OK?'" Kindler  told WPXI Friday.

Mike Burkhart said the crash sounded like thunder, but he immediately knew something was wrong.

"God told me it wasn't thunder," Burkhart said.

He pulled Isaac out of the car and his wife put towels around him until paramedics arrived.

Kindler was taken to a hospital in an ambulance with leg injuries. Isaac was airlifted to Allegheny Valley Hospital, where he later died.

"I told him. I loved him and kissed his forehead. That was the last time I (saw) him," Isaac's father, David Thomas, said. "I was hoping there was a chance because it was just a small wreck, a little tip."

Isaac had just started first-grade at Bon Air Elementary last Wednesday. The school is just two miles away from the site of the crash, and the community was stunned by the tragedy.

Burrell School District Superintendent Dr. Shannon L. Wagner issued the following statement:

It is with a sad and heavy heart that the Burrell School District acknowledges the sudden loss of an elementary student today. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends. Our Crisis Team has been activated and will be available to support students and staff as we cope with this loss.

Administrators said a crisis support team is available for students and staff.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the family with expenses. Over $5,700 has been raised toward its $8,000 goal.

Isaac's family members said they're so grateful for the outpouring of support from the community.

My cousin Amber and her family suffered a massive loss today. Please donate, even a dollar would help.

Posted by Gavin O'Marehen on Thursday, September 1, 2016