WAUWATOSA -- On a night many people were hiding from the blizzard indoors, dozens were outside in Wauwatosa. They went out in the storm because of their shared love for 11-year-old Joey Kramer.
Kramer was hit and killed by a train Monday morning near 68th and State while walking to Longfellow Middle School. Kramer had been wearing ear buds and likely didn't hear the approaching train.
Friday night, those who cared about Kramer walked from his family's home toward the railroad crossing where he died. His mother had planned to attend Friday's walk and vigil, but in the end, told organizers it was too difficult to face.
"A mother lost her baby, and we need to be here for her. Being a mother myself, it hurt me to know this young child passed away so tragically," organizer Raquel Maldonado said.
The group stopped at nearby Hart Park for protection from the storm. Friends shared memories and stories of Kramer, including his former youth football coach. "He gave it his all every time we would do drills, and he was so enthusiastic about playing," Kramer's coach said.
The vigil's organizers presented Kramer's aunt with a plaque with Kramer's picture. Even those who never met the 11-year-old, are touched by his story. "I think most people I've talked to in my neighborhood, which is just a couple blocks from here, felt very much this tragedy," Anne Calvey said.