Teachers fondly remember boy killed in bike accident
Friends, teachers and family members are mourning the 11-year-old boy who was killed when he was struck by a vehicle while bike riding near his Round Lake home.
Jose Antonio Zamudio was crossing Rollins Road when he was struck by a westbound pickup truck about 6:24 p.m. Wednesday, Lake County Coroner Artis Yancey said Thursday. Zamudio was pronounced dead at Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville an hour later.
"It's such a shame," said Constance Collins, superintendent of Round Lake Area Unit District 116. "Teachers said he was a wonderful student, was well-liked by his friends and staff members, and will be truly missed."
Zamudio had just started summer vacation Tuesday and would have been an eighth-grader at Round Lake Middle School in the coming school year, Collins said.
Teacher Diane Gleeson said Zamudio was inquisitive, witty and eager to learn. Principal Ryan Hawkins said the boy had a smile that could "light up a room."
"He was very well-liked by his peers and staff. He will be missed deeply by the school family," Hawkins added.
An autopsy for Zamudio is scheduled for Friday, Yancey said, but added that the boy was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.
A preliminary examination showed Zamudio died from massive head trauma, Yancey said.
Initial reports are that Zamudio was traveling on Lotus Drive and crossing Rollins Road when he wheeled his bicycle into traffic, Round Lake Beach Deputy Police Chief Rich Chiarello said.
"All witness accounts said the truck that hit the boy had a green light at the time of the crash," Chiarello said.
The unidentified driver of the truck stopped at the scene and was cooperative throughout the investigation, he said.
No charges have been filed against the truck driver, Chiarello said, but the accident is under investigation by the Round Lake Beach and Round Lake Heights police, and the Major Crash Assistance Team of Lake County.
That intersection is shared by Round Lake Heights and Round Lake Beach, but Chiarello said Round Lake Beach is leading the investigation and Round Lake Heights is assisting.