Police said Ellie Kuslis had “become entangled within a farm implement that was running”
A Connecticut community is mourning the loss of a 4-year-old girl who died in an accident on her family’s farm.
Ellie Kuslis was fatally injured on Saturday afternoon, the Watertown Police Department said in a news release obtained by PEOPLE.
After arriving at a field on Barnes Road, a part of the Kuslis Farm, authorities determined that Ellie had become “entangled within a slice seeder that was attached to the rear of a farm tractor operated by her father,” police said.
Although the tractor was stationary at the time of the incident, the bladed machine “remained engaged,” police wrote. Ellie was pronounced deceased at the scene.
Her cause of death was determined to be blunt force trauma, police wrote, noting that her death has been certified as accidental by the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office.
“The exact circumstances remain under investigation,” police wrote.
Speaking at the press conference, police said the young girl’s “horrific” death was “an unimaginable tragedy.”
“As difficult as this tragedy is for our responders, it pales in comparison to the grief and heartbreak being experienced by the Kuslis family. The loss of one’s child is the ultimate tragedy,” Watertown Police Chief Joshua Bernegger said, according to The Hartford Courant.
“We want the Kuslis family to know that the Watertown Police Department, along with the entire Watertown and Oakville community, grieves the loss of Ellie with you,” Bernegger added.
When reached by PEOPLE on Thursday, police said there was no additional information to share.
Ellie was remembered by loved ones as “a gift to all who knew her.”
“Ellie was perfect, a spark plug of a girl whose favorite color was blue, who loved all animals and gave them names, like ‘Poppy’ and ‘Princess Whitey,’ ” reads an obituary for the young girl.
“She wanted to be an animal doctor, people doctor, and an animal rescuer and she would have been all three,” the obituary continued, calling the “gifted and talented” young girl “a true cowgirl.”
As the obituary came to a close, loved ones wrote that Ellie, who knew “every inch of the Kuslis Farm,” will forever be “a part of the land she grew up on.”
A GoFundMe has been set up on behalf of her family.
“It is with a heavy heart, a state of sorrow and utter disbelief [that] we mourn the loss of beautiful Ellie Mae Kuslis,” a loved one wrote on the fundraising page.
“Our community loves the Kuslis family and will carry them during this difficult time,” the message continued. “While nothing can ease the pain this family is going through right now, it is our hope that through the generosity of those lives Ellie has touched and the generosity of our community as a whole, we can provide this family with some kind of relief during this unimaginable time of need.”
As of Thursday afternoon, the GoFundMe has raised over $43,000. Those interested in donating may do so here.
Source & Credit: people.com