Grief counseling will be offered at Grasso Tech school in Groton after a 16-year-old male student was killed in a rollover crash in his homemade go-kart in Montville, Connecticut, on Sunday afternoon.
Christopher "C.J." Smith, 16, of Norwich, was driving his go-kart near 17 Caroline Road when he lost control at 1:30 p.m. and flipped over several times, police said. Students at Smith's school were notified of his death in homeroom Monday morning, according to the principal.
State police, Montville EMS crews and Mohegan Tribal paramedics all responded, but Smith's injuries were too severe and he was pronounced dead at the scene.
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“We are deeply saddened by the passing of C.J. and we offer our sincerest condolences to his family and friends," Kelly Donnelly, a spokesperson for the Connecticut Technical High School System, said in a statement. "Our immediate attention and focus is on supporting our students, staff and the Grasso Tech community as we grieve and cope with this heartbreaking loss.”
It's the second week in a row that Norwich residents are dealing with the accidental death of a local teen.
Norwich Free Academy student and Norwich resident Karl Joseph, 17, died following a kayaking accident on the Shetucket River nd his body was found last week.
Smith often visted his grandparents in Montville and that's where he was when the tragedy struck. Family members were shocked by the accident.
"There was so many people here that it was hard to believe what was going on," said C.J.'s grandmother Linda Smith, who lives on Caroline Road near where the accident occured.
Linda said C.J. was the oldest of four brothers, an active Boy Scout, and a sophomore at Grasso Tech in Groton studying electronics and electricity. He also loved to hunt.
"He had a heart of gold," she said. "He would do anything for anybody. He was a good, good child."
The family says things will never be the same without him.
Friends of the family have set up a GoFundMe page to help pay for funeral services. State police are investigating the crash.
Grief counseling will be offered at Grasso Tech all day and likely through the rest of the week.
State police are investigating the crash.