INDIAN HARBOR, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Two young boys are in the hospital with a long road to recovery. The brothers, ages 8 and 11, were hit by a car as they were running to see Santa Claus on a firetruck Sunday night -- part of Indian Harbor Beach Volunteer Fire Department's annual holiday event.
"They weren’t paying attention to the traffic. They were coming over to see Santa. Obviously we were on the opposite side of the road. Tragically they got hit by a car," said Chief Todd Scaldo.
He says they just finished Sunday night leg of their annual Santa run, or Santa Claus rides on the top of a decorated fire truck and rides through different neighborhoods while fire fighters and hand out candy canes. The IHBVFD driver immediately turned around.
"He made a U-turn, my guys in the engine, and blocked the scene. They made sure the kids did not get hit again. And, we started administering a medical services and did CPR on the children," said Chief Scaldo.
Both boys and we’re here lifted to Arnold Palmer Children’s Hospital in Orlando. According to the family‘s latest update on their GoFundMe page, eight-year-old Gregory is in stable but critical condition. He's been and in and out of consciousness, and does not have any broken bones. He’s being monitored for any delayed head trauma.
Verdell, 11, is out of surgery after getting pins put in his broken left leg. He’s got a broken wrist too. Doctors are keeping him sedated for now.
The family is receiving lots of support from the community, especially on the GoFundMe page they've set up.