Leighton update: Students, staff miss 7-year-old in hospital - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Leighton update: Students, staff miss 7-year-old in hospital

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UPDATE: A young boy hit by a pickup truck is still in the hospital tonight.

Leighton Pullin of Waterloo is suffering a fractured skull, brain swelling, and some broken bones after being hit by a pickup truck while trying to cross West 11th Street.

For more than a week now, Leighton's desk and locker at school have been empty.

"The halls and classrooms shine a little less without Leighton around," says Carrie Heinzerling, Principal at Lowell Elementary School. Principal Heinzerling describes Leighton as a polite, kind and just truly wonderful young man that they are glad to have at Lowell.

News of the accident and the absence of Leighton hit everyone at the school hard.

"You know when it first happened, we brought in additional counselors in our buildings and our staff, because you know, thinking about the last conversation or thinking about the last interaction you've had with him...yeah it's been tough," says Heinzerling. "There were some really difficult questions you know, just wondering what was going to happen and if he was going to be okay? And it's so hard to answer that because we don't know."

The employees and students at the school are sending Leighton their love.

"Our kiddos made cards for Leighton and a family member came and picked them up and took them down," says Heinzerling. "Hopefully mom and some others had a chance to peek at those, they were really cute and the kids did a great job. We miss him a lot and we pray that everything will work out for the best, that he will be back with us."

Doctors tried waking Leighton up from a medically-induced coma on Monday, but Leighton has not responded to those efforts.


Leighton Pullin is a fighter who has touched the hearts of many throughout eastern Iowa.

It's been days since he was hit by a pickup truck in Waterloo. He remains in critical but stable condition. Sadly, his mother says his three-year-old sister saw it happen.

Family members are asking for continued support during this difficult time.

Aunt Sherri Joshua says, "Prayers really do give us hope. It just really affirms that Leighton is loved and that he is needed here, so it gives us a reason to keep fighting and to keep encouraging him to fight."

His injuries are serious, including brain damage. Doctors tried waking him for the first time today, but he did not respond. He remains in a coma.

"It's heart-wrenching. I just want him to get back to the same little boy that's talking to me about superheroes or whatever movie he wants to see next...that's really what I want," Joshua says.

Right now, Leighton is showing his love for superheroes in a bit of a different way, he is one...fighting hard each and every day. His family is amazed by this little boy's strength and he's not giving up.

"We are all very proud of how hard he is fighting," Joshua says.

Joshua started a GoFundMe page at gofundme.com/leighton-pullin-2v2w42c?ssid=781877689&pos=1

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