OCCIDENTAL, Calif. (KRON) — A 2-year-old boy who was killed during Wednesday night’s rainstorm has been identified by the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office and his family.
The toddler, Aeon Tocchini, died after a redwood tree crashed on top of his home in Occidental, Calif., on Joy Road. The rural area is heavily wooded and studded by redwoods.
The town’s fire chief was first on scene, but sadly, there was nothing he or paramedics could do to revive Aeon.
Aeon was nicknamed “Goldie” because of his beautiful blond hair that shined like the sun, his family said.
His grieving grandmother, Aileen Tocchini, told KRON4 that the young boy’s sudden death felt like a “nightmare.”
Aeon was, “full of joy. He brought happiness to everybody he connected with, no matter if he was at a grocery store or at the park,” his grandmother said.
According to the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office, the toddler was sitting on a couch in the living room at 5:30 p.m. when strong wind gusts toppled the tree. The tree smashed through the ceiling and onto the toddler.
“Trees were falling left and right,” due to the storm and “basically crushed the residence,” said Sheriff’s Sgt. Juan Valencia.
Occidental Fire Department Chief Ron Lunardi was first to arrive on scene. “A frantic father came out of the household with the child, he was kind of covered in debris and he said ‘my child is not breathing,'” Lunardi said.
Aeon’s parents, Dan and Aisha, are now left to pick up the pieces of what’s left of their heavily damaged home. A chaplain was called in to comfort the family. “They are having a really hard time,” Aileen Tocchini said.
A GoFundMe page was created by the toddler’s aunt to support the family and fund funeral costs.
“You never imagine tragedy hitting your own family, until one day, it does. Our worst nightmare became reality. Our hearts are broken and our family is shocked and rocked to the core,” the aunt wrote.
She wrote, “Goldie loved to dance, music moved his soul. He was kind, gentle, and had the most loving spirit. He loved the outdoors like his mama, and his daddy was his hero. He was deeply adored by his family and he instantly stole the hearts of those around him. He shined like the sun. If you ever had the joy of meeting Goldie, you would know the light that I speak of. His light still shines so brightly in our hearts, and always will.”