POQUOSON, Va. (WAVY) - Grief counselors were at Poquoson High School Monday to helpstudents deal with the sudden, tragic loss of one of theirclassmates.
Fourteen-year old Frank Anthony Gornik of Poquoson died in awood chipper accident Sunday evening.
Poquoson Police Chief Cliff Bowen told WAVY.com, Gornik wasworking with Old Dominion Tree and Lawn Care Service at a home onWagner Road.
"They were doing some tree trimming and using a chipper machineto grind up some of the debris," Bowen said. "Apparently one of themembers of the crew was shoveling debris into the back of thechipper, at which time the shovel he was using got caught in theblades and pulled him into the machine."
Gornik died at the scene, Bowen said.
"Based on everything we know this is an accident," said ChiefBowen. "It's one the most tragic accidents I've seen in my 25 yearsof law enforcement."
Reached by phone at his home Sunday night, Poquoson High SchoolPrincipal Bernard Wright said, "This was a tragic accident. Ourhearts go out to the family and friends of this young man."
"Our crisis team will be there [Monday] with our counselors andcounselors from other schools," said Principal Wright.
Wright deferred further questions to the school districtspokesperson.
Tuesday, a few of the first responders arriving at last Sunday'stragic accident where Gornik was killed, will get professionalcounseling services during a critical incident stressdebriefing.
Deputy Chief Michael Bryant of Poquoson Fire Rescue said,"If itsbothering them this gives them an outlet to discuss it. Wecertainly don't want this to be ignored or prolonged."
He believes this gives them a chance to move on from whatthey've experienced. The sessions are private and follow ups willbe available if needed.
Many areas, including Poquoson, are still cleaning up followinga Nor'easter two weeks ago.
A charitable fund has been set up for Frank Gornik's family. Ifyou'd like to help go to any Old Point National Bank and make adonation in his name.
Four teenagers have been arrested in connection to a fight at Oscar Smith Middle School Halloween night.
A routine traffic stop in Chesapeake resulted in a three-city pursuit Friday morning.
Wet weather is expected to move into the area over the weekend, forcing some areas to cancel or change their holiday events.