MT. ARLINGTON, NJ – More than $50,000 was donated by this evening to an online fundraising effort for a family that lost a 10-year-old boy in a boating accident Wednesday.
The campaign, which raised $52,475 from 497 people in 15 hours, sought to gather only $10,000 for the family of Christopher D’Amico. The boy died Wednesday afternoon after being hit by a pontoon boat being piloted by his father on Lake Hopatcong.
D'Amico fell off of the boat at about 1 p.m. in the Byram Cove area. “He was struck by the vessel and pulled from the water by witnesses,” said State Police Trooper Alina Sties. She said the youngster was transported by helicopter to Morristown Memorial Hospital and pronounced dead at 1:35 p.m.
The boat, which was rented from Lake’s End Marina, was traveling slowly when D’Amico fell overboard, said Sties. She said no charges had been filed in the matter as of today, but the incident remains under investigation.
In a Facebook post, the boy’s father, also named Christopher, said his son’s donated organs helped save the lives of eight other children. “We lost a piece of our hearts today,” he wrote. “On behalf of myself, my wife Laura and our daughter Vianna, we would like to thank you for your kind thoughts and prayers.”