A 4-year-old Brooklyn boy was struck and killed by a school bus as he walked to catch it for the short ride to his preschool on Wednesday.
Police and witnesses said the child, Amron Altman, was pronounced dead at the scene.
Yanky Meyer, president of Misaskim, a crisis support organization, said the Yeshiva Bais Chaim bus company driver did not see the small child coming toward the bus.
The boy usually waited with his mother in the vestibule of their three-family house for the bus to arrive, but on Wednesday she sent Amron out with his 13-year-old brother, Israel, Meyer said.
The 32-year-old driver stopped in front of the house, and when he didn't see the boy in the vestibule, "the driver started going. He didn't realize he hit him,'' said Meyer.
The boy, who attended Darchei Chaim preschool about a mile from his home, would have turned five on Sunday, he said.
"It's horrible, it's so tragic, it's just awful because it's the holiday of Purim which is the children's holiday," said Adel Erps, a neighbor.
Another neighbor, Gill Hoffman blamed the city. "This is a tragedy that happened and should not happen."
Amron died before the ambulance arrived, said Harold Jacob, president of the Hatzalah ambulance company.
In keeping with Jewish tradition, the boy was scheduled to be buried on Wednesday.
The accident occurred at the intersection of 13th Avenue and 49th Street in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn.
No charges were filed against the driver. Police said the accident was under investigation.