Many people in Carroll County bring their children to the slopes near McDaniel College to sled when the snow piles up, and on this day, they are reminded why.
"It's so good that they can't go into the road here,” said Karen Mettille, “My home where I live, when they go down our little hill, they go right into the road. So I wouldn't ever let them do it."
Such was the case early Monday on Heritage Lane in Sykesville when Thomas Cusick spotted an ambulance driving by, and he says he initially feared someone shoveling snow had suffered a heart attack.
"The next thing you know, I heard somebody got hit... some little girl, and then somebody did CPR on her and just didn't get any response."
The five-year old girl, it turns out, had been sledding down a neighbor's driveway when she slid in front of a vehicle being driven by a 49-year old woman who lived nearby.
"I just cried. I just couldn't believe it,” said Cusick’s wife, Rosemary, “I've seen her walk here to the bus stop---her dad walking (with her). I have a cat and she loves my cat. They talk to each other out at the end of the driveway, and it was just so, so sad. I could cry now. It just breaks your heart. She was a cute little thing."
It is a feeling shared by virtually any parent who considers a young child filled with joy, sledding, one moment and making a fatal miscalculation the next.
"I lost a daughter and believe me, it's not a good thing,” said Mettille, “I don't think you ever get over it."
While the accident is still under investigation, at this point, Carroll County Sheriff's officials say that it does not appear that the driver was traveling an excessive speed, nor was she impaired.
To help with medical and funeral expenses, Clara's family set up a GoFundMe page.
Original: A 5-year-old girl was hit by a car and killed after sledding down a driveway in Carroll County Monday morning.
Around 10:20 a.m. the Carroll County Sheriff's Office was called to Heritage Lane in Sykesville to investigate an accident.
Police said the girl was sledding down a driveway onto the road when she was hit by a Kia Sorento. The 49-year-old woman behind the wheel showed no signs of impairment and police do not believe speed was a factor.
The girl was taken to Carroll Hospital Center for treatment where she later died.
The sheriff's office is investigating the accident. Charges have not been filed. Once the investigation is finished the Carroll County State's Attorney's Office will determine if charges are appropriate.