Fundraiser planned for 3-year-old following deadly Head Start incident

Death of Lilliana Jake Kerr ruled an accident

By ZEINAB NAJM
Times-Herald Newspapers

HEIGHTS — A fundraiser for a 3-year-old girl killed Jan. 20 when a table at a Head Start facility collapsed on her will be held at 7 p.m. Jan. 27 at Walker’s Speakeasy, 8701 N. Beech Daly.

Admission is $10, and a 50/50 drawing and basket raffles will be featured.

The Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled the death of Lilliana Jade Kerr an accident after a picnic table attached to a wall in the gymnasium at St. Albert the Great Catholic School, 4671 Parker, collapsed about 10:30 a.m. during recess. The cause of death was “a result of blunt head trauma,” spokesman Lloyd Jackson said.

Head Start officials performed CPR on Kerr while waiting for first responders to arrive. She was taken to Beaumont Hospital-Dearborn where she was pronounced dead.

Wayne County Metropolitan Community Action Agency, serves as the Head Start provider at the school.

“A tragic accident took place today at our Saint Albert the Great site,” a statement from the agency Jan. 20 read. “One of our Head Start children sustained injuries in the school gym. Our staff responded immediately and provided CPR and first aid until EMS arrived. We learned that despite all efforts the child passed away at the hospital. Our most heartfelt condolences go out to the family.

“We have been working with law enforcement who are continuing their investigation. They have told us that staff took the appropriate actions and this again was a tragic accident.”

Students were sent home the day of the incident and the Head Start program at St. Albert is closed until further notice. Grief counseling services were arranged for families.

A GoFundMe page was set up to help pay for funeral expenses on the behalf of Kerr’s mother, Tabatha, who is a single mother of two other children.

The page raised $17,920 in two days by 287 contributors, exceeding the $15,000 goal. To donate to the fund, go to gofundme.com/lillianas-funeral-expenses.

(Zeinab Najm can be reached at zeinabnajm92@gmail.com.)