Wisconsin 1st grader critical after hit by rock launched from lawnmower

KENOSHA COUNTY, Wis. — A Wisconsin first grader is in critical condition after he was hit in the head by a rock that was propelled from a lawnmower at his elementary school.

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Alex Hook, 6, was in a medically induced coma after he was hit Friday while at recess at Riverview Elementary School in Silver Lake, the La Crosse Tribune reported.

“We’re all hoping for the best,” the boy’s mother, Caryn Hook, told WISN-TV.

According to the boy’s aunt, Michelle Delaquila Koertgen, who has set up a GoFundMe page, a landscaper mowed over a piece of rebar, which struck the boy directly in the back of his head.

The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department told the Tribune that the lawnmower was reportedly mowing the grassy median in the center of the street near the school just before noon when the incident occurred.

The landscaper was 72 feet away from the boy on the other side of a chain-link fence at the time of the accident, according to WISN, which cited a sheriff’s department report.

Alex Hook was flown to Children’s Hospital in Wauwatosa where he underwent emergency brain surgery, the newspaper reported. He suffered a fractured skull and bleeding in his brain, according to the Tribune.

“Why are you mowing the grass when children are around?” Koertgen told WLS-TV. “School is what, 9 a.m. to 3? You can’t do it before or when they are not at recess?”

In a statement Wednesday, Silver Lake School District officials expressed “great concern and devastation” over the accident.

“Our staff have been proactively working with law enforcement and due to the sensitive nature of the investigation and to protect the privacy of our students we cannot provide further comment at this time,” District Administrator Jon Schleusner said in the statement.

The GoFundMe account has raised more than $129,000 since Friday.