Illinois boy, 5, killed when table falls on him at wedding reception

"It happened in the blink of an eye."

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/ Source: TODAY
By Rachel Paula Abrahamson

A 5-year-old boy died in a freak accident when a granite table fell on his head at a family member’s wedding reception.

Luca Berlingerio, who attended the celebration with his parents at the Drake Hotel in Oak Brook, Illinois, was socializing with other children when the tragedy occurred earlier this month.

“It happened in the blink of an eye,” Oak Brook Police Department Commander Benjamin Kadolph told TODAY Parents.

Luca Berlingerio, 5, died when a granite table fell on his head at a wedding reception. Courtesy Berlingerio Family

According to Kadolph and a press release, the little boy was lying on a tall, narrow table with a granite top that was against the back of a sofa. When he began to slide off, he grabbed the table's edges to steady himself but pulled it down with him.

He suffered severe head injuries and was rushed to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Kadolph called Berlingerio's death "horrific."

The Drake Hotel’s general manager, Lee Hoener, told TODAY Parents in a statement: “Our team is heartbroken about this terrible accident. We wish to share our condolences with the family and friends affected.”

Hoener added that hotel staff will not share specifics about the incident out of respect for the Berlingerio family's privacy.

An obituary for Berlingerio stated that he “passed away suddenly.” Berlingerio, who was buried on Saturday, is survived by his parents, Simone and Anna Berlingerio, and his older brother, Rocco.

Luca celebrated his fifth birthday on Aug. 28, just one week before the accident.

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