Dog Attack Kills Galesburg Boy-UPDATED - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Dog Attack Kills Galesburg Boy-UPDATED

Updated:
Nielson Elementary School in Galesburg, IL where Maxwell attended will have grief counselors available Monday for students.   Photo courtesy Steve Davis/The Register-Mail Nielson Elementary School in Galesburg, IL where Maxwell attended will have grief counselors available Monday for students. Photo courtesy Steve Davis/The Register-Mail

A 7-year old Galesburg boy has died after a dog attack. Police say the attack happened when Ryan Maxwell was playing with other kids in the backyard of a home he was visiting. Officers were called and were able to get the dog off the boy, but then it turned on them and was shot. 7-year old Maxwell was taken to a hospital, where he died.

"I can't remember it happening in my 24-years here. Have we had dog bites? Yes, we have like every other city. Have we had dog attacks like every other city? Yes, but not to this extent. This is a tragedy there's no other way to put it," says Captain Rod Riggs of the Galesburg Police Department.

Galesburg police are investigating why the dog attacked the boy.  At the same time Maxwell's classmates are remembering and honoring the 2nd grader.

At Nielson Elementary School in Galesburg everyone is remembering Ryan Maxwell.

"He was a good boy, he was always very helpful, good with his classmates, well liked and he was a good friend," says Principal Matthew LeClere.

A sign in front of the school says "Ryan, We Will Remember You." The sign is not the only way the 2nd grader is being honored. Maxwell's desk is filled with cards, flowers and bears. Also, the entire school is wearing a special pin.

"Our school colors are black, silver and white," adds LeClere, "So we had these ribbons made up to help us remember Ryan."

To help students cope with Maxwell's death grief counselors were brought in. Students were told in their individual classrooms, except for the 2nd graders, Maxwell's classmates for the past 3-years.

"He's touched a lot of lives," says LeClere, "For that particular group we put all those kids together in one room and we talked about it."

Word started to spread on Saturday that Maxwell was killed in the dog attack. The principal alerted parents and teachers. Grief counselors were brought in Sunday and the school administrators visited Maxwell's family.

"We made a trip over to see the child's mother. We reached out to her and offered her any support as well," says LeClere.

The school is planning a benefit to help with expenses. If you would like to make a donation you can send it to F&M Bank in Galesburg. To leave your condolences for the family, click here.

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