A 3-year-old boy was found frozen to death after he wandered off in the middle of the coldToronto night. The 3-year-old tot, who was dressed in only a diaper, t-shirt and boots, “huddled” against the cold in the corner of his neighbor’s yard and fell asleep, never to wake again. The child’s frozen body had police in tears as they removed him from the area where he was found.
Police have released the photo of Elijah Marsh making his way out of the building, which is the last photo of the child alive. This tragedy has pulled on the heart-strings of the city and people around the world.
According to JRN News on Feb. 21, a vigil was held for Elijah on Saturday and a make-shift memorial stands outside his grandmother’s apartment building where he crept out during the night while everyone else was sleeping. Security footage from the apartment complex shows Elijah pushing open the outside doors at 4 a.m. on Thursday morning.
He was staying with his grandmother and when the family got out of bed on Friday morning around 7:30 a.m. they found their apartment door open and the 3-year-old gone. The police were called and a search started immediately from the ground and the air.
Police on horseback, a helicopter and hundreds of volunteers joined in the neighborhood search for the little boy who toddled away from home in the middle of the night. The news of the missing tot made the morning radio and TV newscasts and soon people from all over Toronto joined the search, according to The Huntington Post today.
Police sent out an urgent plea to the neighbors via Twitter during the search for the boy. It said, “URGENT: Neighbors near Neptune Drive, please check under/in your cars for Elijah, 3, BEFORE you drive off!!!”
It was two volunteers who came across Elijah’s lifeless body curled up and still, not far from the apartment he had wandered out of. Police said today that he was “huddled up to an air conditioning unit just 1,000 feet away from where he got locked out of his family’s apartment.” By the time Elijah was found, he had been outside six hours in temperatures that went as low as -20 during the night. The little boy was dead.
When the child’s grandmother was told that her grandson was found dead, she could only say through her tears, “No, no, no.” The devastation was immediate and unmistakable in the crowd once the news of the boy’s death was announced.
Police announced on Twitter that the child had been found dead with a tweet at 9:59 a.m. on Friday morning, “We regret to announce that 3yr old #Elijah has died. Our thoughts are with his family and all affected by this tragedy #PrayForElijah “
A crowd sourcing website page was set-up on Tilt.com to first help little Elijah’s family with the funeral expenses, but it has grown to over $175,000 by Sunday. The rest of the money will go to the boy’s family.