Suffield is mourning the loss of a 12-year-old boy who died Thursday after he was struck by a box truck while riding his bicycle near Suffield Middle School.
Seventh-grade student Francis Anthony Alamo was riding his bike with two friends on Mountain Road at the time of the accident, according to Suffield Supt. Karen Baldwin, who sent a letter to parents breaking the news.
Police said the crash happened around 4 p.m. at the intersection of Mountain Road and Canborne Way, right across from the school. Anthony was a student there.
He was struck by a box truck, which remained at the scene, and taken to Baystate Hospital for treatment of serious injuries that proved fatal, Baldwin said.
Anthony's best friend, Dillion Loiseau, was with him at the time. Dillion said Anthony's bike had a flat tire, and the group was planning to fill it at the gas station and play basketball when the truck came.
"The entire Suffield Public Schools community is mourning the tragic passing of our 7th grade student Francis Anthony Alamo. Anthony and his family returned to the Suffield community this past school year, and we all feel blessed that we were able to know Anthony and benefit from his kind spirit and abundant energy," Baldwin wrote in a letter to parents Thursday. "Anthony was a bright, creative young man who brought positive energy to every class and activity that he participated in."
Friends say Anthony was a gymnast and actor with a big personality and unmistakeable smile. Community members left flowers at a makeshift memorial for Anthony outside the school near the crash site Friday.
Grief counselors were available at Suffield Middle School on Friday and a counseling schedule for next week was posted on the school Web site, along with a letter from Baldwin.
Police and fire crews blocked off the area and remained on the scene for hours.
Suffield police are investigating the crash. No charges have been filed.