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7-year-old hit by a truck in LaBelle; The community coming together to make his holidays special

Posted at 10:09 PM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-15 21:16:55-05

LABELLE, Fla. — It was just after school when Michael Torres Gonzalez was playing outside when the ice cream truck came around.

He got himself some ice cream and his sister called him back to the house. She then let him go back to the neighbor's house when he dropped his ice cream.

“He said he was trying to pick up his ice cream fast enough. He didn't make it," Stephanie Gonzalez, Michael's sister, said.

He didn't make it out of the way as a stranger came down Barbara Street in a truck.

“I heard the crash sound and I saw him fly," Gonzalez said.

Michael was left unconscious on the roadway as his family said the driver abandoned the truck and fled.

Michael was transported to Golisano Children's Hospital for his injuries.

His family wants justice for Michael and word of what happened to Michael spread quickly through the neighborhood. The owner of the local learning center learned of the news. She has known him since he was a baby. She was heartbroken.

“I feel terrible. It made me feel like something really bad had hit me," Mary Ann Marroquin, the CEO of Marroquin’s Learning Center, said.

Other folks in LaBelle also heard the news and, like Marroquin, wanted to help the family.

“The community had asked that they wanted to bring Michael some presents and I stepped in," Marroquin said.

She posted on Facebook opening her daycare for neighbors to drop gifts and cards for Michael. Presents that would help cheer him up, like legos and little toy cars.

Marroquin said donations could be dropped off— or mailed— she said even a simple prayer would go a long way.

If you would like to help, contact Marroquin. You can also mail gifts or cards to 1220 FL-29 LaBelle, FL 33935.