A Small Memorial for a Big Loss

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SAINT CLAIR -- The death of a 4-year-old boy in Schuylkill County is hitting a community hard. Even emergency responders are struggling with the loss.

The little boy died last week in a crash at a busy intersection in Saint Clair.

Saint Clair police are still trying to determine the exact cause of the crash that killed 4-year-old Issac Krammes of New Philadelphia, but authorities admit the intersection where the crash happened is known for crashes.

At the intersection of Route 61 and Terry Rich Boulevard in Saint Clair is a small memorial: blue flowers tied to a pole to remember Krammes, who died on Thursday.

Police believe the minivan his father was driving was making a left turn into the Walmart plaza when it was struck by a pickup truck.

"I've tried to get it out of my mind, but it's tough," said volunteer firefighter Richard Rodrian.

Rodrian was among the dozens of emergency responders who rushed to the scene of the crash on Thursday trying to save the young boy's life. He's seen hundreds of crashes during his 40 years as a firefighter, but this one has hit him hard.

"I am really sorry that happened. It shouldn't have happened. It's senseless."

Authorities are frustrated with the number of crashes that happen at the intersection.

"We estimate that we have about five crashes a month at that particular intersection," said Saint Clair Police Chief William Dempsey.

The death of the 4-year-old boy is the first fatality here, but PennDOT says there have been at least 22 serious crashes within five years that resulted in injuries or significant damage to the vehicles involved, even though there are proper turning arrows and lights.

"We depend on driver cooperation with those signals," said the chief. "A lot of the time we have a situation where it is driver error involved and we have people rushing to where they want to be quicker."

Seandavid Gould and his wife Ashley tied blue flowers to a pole near the deadly crash. They are members of a Facebook group that chipped in for the flowers. The flowers are meant as a memorial to the little boy, but also as another reminder of why drivers should be cautious at this intersection.

"It's extremely unfortunate, especially it being a child," said Seandavid Gould. "I mean anybody losing their life at a motor vehicle accident, it's hard, but a child is 10 times harder. Just slow down and pay attention."

The funeral for 4-year-old Issac Krammes is scheduled for Wednesday at the Thomas J. Bartashus Funeral Home in New Philadelphia.

The funeral home is accepting donations to help the family with expenses and a GoFundMe page has been set up.