FORT PIERCE, Fla. - The family of a 9-year-old boy killed in a Fort Pierce school bus crash is suing the driver of the semi truck that ploughed into the bus, and the company that owns the truck.
On March , at 3:45 in the afternoon, the lives of 31 Francis Sweet Magnet students were changed forever, when their school bus was hit by a Cypress Trucking tractor trailer at the intersection of Okeechobee and Midway Roads in Fort Pierce.
Anthony Yannucci's son, Joey, was one of 14 children injured in the crash. Joey was in a coma for three weeks, but Yannucci says he’s recovering miraculously.
“He has come a long way in a very short time, not only from my standpoint, but from the medical field,” said Yannucci.
But Joey’s schoolmate, Aaron Beauchamp, didn’t make it through the crash. 9-year-old Beauchamp was pronounced dead at the scene.
Yannucci says the Beauchamps suffered a horrific loss, and he respects the family's desire for privacy in this difficult time.
"We had hope," said Yannucci. "The Beauchamps never had that hope, and we have to live with the loss of Aaron, and they have to deal with it as well, and how they deal with it is how they deal with it."
Now, Aaron’s mother, Lillian Beauchamp, is filing a lawsuit against Cypress Trucking, and the driver of the tractor-trailer, Charles Cooper. The lawsuit states, “As a result of the negligence of the defendant, Charles Thomas Cooper, and as a direct result of injuries sustained in the subject collision caused by the Defendant’s negligence, the decedent, Aaron Beauchamp, a child, was wrongfully killed. ”
Yannucci says, as his son Joey continues to recover, the community support has helped his family, and his family keeps the Beauchamps in their thoughts.
“We concentrate on the Beauchamps and the pain and the suffering that they’re going through. Now, it’s just a shift, to them,” he explained.
The Beauchamps have filed a claim with the St. Lucie county school district, but the district is not named in the wrongful death complaint.
According to the first report released by the Florida Highway Patrol, truck driver Charles Cooper’s actions did not contribute to the crash.
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