Bicycle accident takes the life of 12-year-old boy

This is an updated version of the story of the fatal bicycle accident that occurred Monday, July 29. It will appear in the Aug. 1 edition of The Bulletin.

A 12-year-old Weston boy was killed as a result of a bicycle accident in the vicinity of 150 Cedar Road in Wilton, Monday, July 29. He has been identified as Joseph Hayes Cina, a student at Weston Middle School, who went by the nickname AJ.

Wilton police received a 911 call at 4:49 p.m., Monday, and found AJ lying off the east side of the road with injuries to his head and face. Wilton EMS attended to him, and took him to Norwalk Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Wilton Lt. Donald Wakeman characterized the incident as “a tragic accident.”

According to the police, AJ was riding with two other  Weston boys, 12 and 13. The boys, who live in the area, came from Cobbs Mill Road, which is at the end of Old Mill Road in Weston, and were headed eastbound on Cedar Road when AJ lost control of his bicycle and rode off the east shoulder of the road. The bicycle struck a slight incline along the mouth of a driveway, causing him to become airborne, police said. He was thrown over a stone wall bordering the roadway, sustaining severe injuries as he fell to the ground.

Lt. Wakeman said AJ may have turned his head to check for traffic when he swerved off the road, colliding with a tree and cinder block. No cars were operating on the road when the accident occurred, according to police interviews with witnesses.

Lt. Wakeman said a bicycle can “gain significant speed on Cobbs Mill Road,” and the boy’s speed may have played a part in the fatality. They were going downhill when AJ lost control of his bicycle.

According to police, none of the boys was wearing a helmet. State law requires anyone under the age of 16 to wear a helmet.

Speaking on the need to be aware of bicycle safety, Lt. Wakeman said, “Any added piece of equipment you can use to improve your safety is best. It’s difficult, though, when you have three youngsters out in the summer riding bikes. They might have gained too much speed coming downhill. You should always be aware of your safety. A helmet may have helped, but you also need to be aware of your speed, other bikes, and car traffic to keep yourself as safe as possible.”

The parents of the cyclists were notified immediately and called to the scene. The Wilton Police Department Accident Reconstruction Team was called in to investigate and was assisted by members of the detective division. Police brought AJ’s bicycle back to police headquarters to check but it seemed to be functioning properly, Lt. Wakeman said.

AJ is the son of Joseph and Holly Cina and the brother of Kelsey. Colleen Palmer, Weston schools superintendent, described AJ as “an amazing young man who touched our lives. He always had a warm smile and friendly hello for anyone he encountered. He was beloved by his friends at school, fellow athletes on his sports teams and our staff who were privileged to know him. AJ was one of those special individuals who was passionate about living life to its fullest, every day.”

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Saturday, Aug. 3, at 11 at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Weston. Calling hours will be at Harding Funeral Home, 210 Post Road East in Westport, on Thursday, Aug. 1, from 6 to 8, and Friday Aug. 2, from 2 to 4, and 6 to 8.

The accident remains under investigation. Anyone who may have seen the boys on their bicycles is asked to call Wilton police at 203-834-6260.