A 14-year-old boy who was in critical condition earlier this week after being struck by a Jeep that slammed into a Hinsdale sub shop has died, his family confirmed Friday.
"Our hearts are broken as we inform you that our precious angel, Sean Patrick Richards, went to heaven Thursday, July 20," the statement read, which was released on behalf of the Richards family by the University of Chicago Comer Children's Hospital. "We are devastated and will forever have a large hole in our hearts."
The collision occurred at approximately 2:36 p.m. Monday at Fontano Deli and Subs, located in the first block of South Lincoln at approximately 2:36 p.m., officials said.
Feeling out of the loop? We'll catch you up on the Chicago news you need to know. Sign up for the weekly Chicago Catch-Up newsletter here.
According to police, Sean, of Hinsdale, was outside the restaurant when he was struck by the Jeep, which had driven out of a nearby car wash and slammed into the wall of the restaurant. Sean was transported to an area hospital and then was flown to Chicago Comer Children's Hospital in critical condition, police said.
Three other individuals inside the restaurant were also struck, either by debris or by the vehicle, and were taken to area hospitals in serious condition, according to police.
A fourth person was treated and released at the scene for minor injuries, authorities said.
Police say the driver of the Jeep was not injured.
Fontano Deli and Subs owner Dominic Fontano on Monday told NBC Chicago the surveillance footage he reviewed from the car wash will likely stick with him for the remainder of his life.
“There’s a couple of teens at the entrance…they just had gotten up,” he said. “They just got up and ready to walk to the door when the car plowed over two of them. The little boy was on the side of the street, got hit by the car, and the car carried him over to this side.
“I don’t think I’ll ever get that out of my sight,” he added.
In their statement, the family describes Sean, who was set to begin high school in the fall at Benet Academy in Lisle, as a "gentle soul who was both humble and kind," and "full of joy."
"He was the most loving child and was a friend to everyone he met," the statement continued.
A statement from the Fuller family, which owns the car wash, said "The entire Fuller family is deeply saddened and shaken by this loss. We will continue to hold his family, who has suffered an unimaginable tragedy, in our hearts and prayers. We will also pray for strength and comfort for the whole community as they struggle with this devastating event."
The Richards' full statement can be found below.
“Our hearts are broken as we inform you that our precious angel, Sean Patrick Richards, went to heaven Thursday, July 20. We are devastated and will forever have a large hole in our hearts
Sean was a gentle soul who was always both humble and kind. Full of joy, he was the most loving child and was a friend to everyone he met. In May, at age 14, he graduated 8th grade at St. Isaac Jogues Parish Catholic School in our hometown of Hinsdale and he was eager to begin high school at Benet Academy in the fall.
We are forever grateful for the outpouring of love and support that has lifted us up during these trying days. In particular, we want to thank those from the St. Isaac Jogues School and Parish, Benet Academy and Hinsdale communities, as well as the many, many friends, family and strangers who have prayed for Sean and our family during this unimaginable time.
In addition, we would like to express our gratitude to the paramedics, doctors and staff at UChicago Medicine AdventHealth Hinsdale and the pediatric intensive care unit at UChicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital for their excellent care.
Please continue to pray for Sean’s soul and for his loving family as we grieve this tremendous loss.”
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.