The distraught parents of a newborn baby who died in a collision between a car and truck in South Auckland are “trying to make each other strong” as they support their four other children, who are still recovering in hospital.
Police yesterday named the child who was killed in the crash last week in Papakura as 1-month-old John Ioane. The circumstances of the accident remain under investigation.
Neighbours described hearing a loud collision followed by crying and wailing. Witnesses rushed to help the family of seven, who lay injured and dying in the mangled car moments after the crash.
The children’s mother, who was pinned in the car, was heard pleading with rescuers to save her children.
The baby’s father spoke to the Herald from the bedside of his other children, who are still receiving treatment for their injuries in Starship Children’s Hospital.
“It is a really bad situation right now,” he said.
“Everyone’s had surgery. All of my kids are on my mind including my youngest.”
The heartbroken mother, who has also undergone surgery, said the family was “trying to make each other strong”.
Friends and family have paid tribute to the dead child on social media and sent their love to the parents.
The crash occurred at the intersection of Ingram St and Porchester Rd about 10.40pm on January 18.
While no charges have been laid, a 25-year-old man has been summoned to the Papakura District Court for refusing an officer’s request to give blood.
He was expected to appear on February 16.
Police said their thoughts were with the baby’s family “at this incredibly difficult time”.
On Sunday, Jazmin Jamieson told the Herald she held the “lifeless” baby in her arms for 15 minutes, stroking the tiny infant’s cheeks for the last moments of the boy’s life while she waited for help to arrive.
Jamieson was standing outside her home on Ingram St when they saw people running towards a heap of mangled metal in the middle of the road.
She spoke to two brothers, aged about 8 and 10, who had suffered cuts and bruises, and saw a woman “squashed in the back of the car”.
Another woman, who Jamieson presumed to be an aunty, was lying on the ground among the wrecked vehicles, screaming about an injury to her arm while a man stood over her, not able to speak due to shock.
Moments later Jamieson saw another woman holding the limp infant.
“She said one of the young boys had given her the baby,” Jamieson said.
“I asked her to give it to me because she was freaking out, she didn’t know what to do.
“[The baby] was completely limp, lifeless, and you could see him struggling to breathe.
“I tried to rub his cheeks and speak to him, but there was no reaction.”
Jamieson stood with the baby, stroking his cheeks and speaking to him softly for 15 minutes among the crash debris before handing him to a first responder.
The baby was then put into the firetruck cab out of sight of the family.
Paramedics treated the wounded before transferring seven patients to Middlemore and Starship hospitals.
Top Geez Earth Workz Ltd director Tama Herkt said one of his light trucks was involved in an accident and a worker was being interviewed by authorities.