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Decatur Fire Station 1 devastated after death of toddler

“They’re not prepared to do and see some of the things that they have to go through and what they have to witness,” said Chief Tracy Thornton.
Updated: Jun. 21, 2021 at 9:27 PM CDT
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DECATUR, Ala. (WAFF) - Decatur Police Department’s traffic homicide unit is investigating Sunday’s death of a toddler. Police say the child’s mother brought him to Fire Station 1 just before 10 a.m. looking for help.

The child victim lived on 7th Ave., that’s where the child’s mother says he was hit by a car. It’s just a block from the fire station.

Fire Chief Tracy Thornton says crews were outside washing trucks when the woman pulled in the driveway.

“There had been an accident and crews started working on the patient in the front pad of the station and when the ambulance got there they loaded the patient into the ambulance,” said Thornton.

The toddler was rushed to Decatur-Morgan Hospital where he later died from the injuries. Thornton says when it comes to people walking into stations with emergencies, it happens pretty regularly.

“They know that we have paramedics and that we have the equipment that they need to help them out if they have a medical emergency,” said Thornton.

Thornton says the crews who worked to save the toddler are heartbroken for the family. He says they train and prepare for things like this, but that doesn’t make it easier for them.

“They have a hard time dealing with it after it’s over with you know. And it’s part of their job and they know they have to do that stuff but still they’re not prepared to do and see some of the things that they have to go through and what they have to witness,” said Thornton.

Firefighters will also have someone to speak to, if that is needed.

“We also have a more formal debriefing set up for their next shift that they work so they’ll sit down and be able to talk to counselors and it’ll kind of help them through coping with this situation,” said Thornton.

There are currently no charges filed in this case. WAFF is still working to get confirmation on the age of child, identity of the driver, and what actually happened that led to this.

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