Girl dies after being hit by a motorcycle

May 28, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
In Novato, there is a community in mourning after a 9-year-old girl, hit by a motorcycle Wednesday night, died on Thursday. The girl and her father were seriously injured when a motorcycle slammed into them in a crosswalk.

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A large part of the community has come together to support each other in the loss of the little girl. People built a memorial full of flowers and candles at the intersection at San Carlos Way and San Marin Drive where the accident happened.

Melody was out for her nightly walk with her father on Wednesday night when a motorcycle ran into them. Witnesses say the motorcyclist blew through the stop sign.

Her father was in critical condition last night, but was later upgraded to stable condition. Doctors, however, did have to amputate one of his legs. Melody was pronounced brain dead and her mother made the tough decision to take her of life support on Thursday morning.

Danielle is mourning the loss of her friend Melody. A photograph captures the two fourth graders celebrating the first day of school together. Now, at the end of the school year, Danielle is mourning the loss of her friend.

"It's stunning it happened so sudden," said Danielle Dube, Melody's friend.

Danielle says she was just playing a game with Melody on the day she died. They were playing a cooking game that the girls never got to finish.

"The little sweetheart was lying in the street," said Catherine Scalimanini, who witnessed the crash said she just can't get over what she saw. "I will never go through this intersection without thinking of this."

The man who drove the motorcycle, 41-year-old Edward Schaefer, is also in the hospital with moderate injuries. According to police, Schaefer has been charged with gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. He is being held on $1.5 million bail.

"You just don't drink and get on your motorcycle to go out and have fun. If you're going to have your drink, stay home, please," said Leslie Berrios Dela Rosa, a family friend.

"It's been a devastating and tragic day for our community. To lose a child so young, with so much life, is difficult for all of us," said Pritchard.

Melody's elementary school principal, Mary Pritchard, helped lead a crowd of about 200 people who came together to remember her. They walked from her school to the intersection where she died, sharing memories of her love for reading, the way she played the cello, and how much everyone loved to hear her laugh.

"For something like that to happen, it's horrific. Anyone who is a parent feels horrible right now," said Manuel Lawrence from Novato.

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