A 2-year-old boy is dead and his brother, age 1, is seriously injured, but expected to survive, after they fell four stories on May 2 from an apartment building rooftop onto a patio fronting the Midtown Greenway.
The boys lived on the top floor of the five-story Karmel Village apartment building, on the 2800 block of Pleasant Avenue.
They climbed over a waist-high cement barrier and landed on a hard-surface patio four stories below.
The boy who died was identified as Abdiqani Abdi by the Hennepin County Medical Examiner.
His brother, Abdirizak, is in stable condition but suffered a broken arm, broken ribs, a collapsed lung and injuries to his chin and forehead, according to a family spokesperson, Osman Ali Ahmed. Ahmed said that Abdirizak had no brain damage and is “making progress.”
Ahmed said he visited the family at their home the evening of May 2.
“The kids were healthy hours before,” Ahmed said. “[The parents] were in shock. They are dealing with the financial and emotional impact.”
Three construction workers watched the children fall around 2:20 p.m. and proceeded to call 911 and hurry to their aid.
One of the workers started CPR on Abdiqani, who appeared lifeless.
“These people should be considered heroes,” Minneapolis police spokesperson John Elder said. “These people witnessed what was unfathomable, something that was tragic and horrific and instead of freezing up they acted.”
Police arrived soon after, followed by paramedics, and the children were taken to Hennepin County Medical Center. Abdiqani was pronounced dead at 3:16 p.m. The Medical Examiner said he died from multiple blunt force injuries sustained in the fall.
“It’s a tragic accident,” building owner Basim Sabri said. “The mom was very sad, the dad was very sad. It’s a rough situation.”
Sabri, who lives in the 98-unit building, said that “for me it’s like the loss of a child.”
“I opened the doors for those kids when they came from school,” he said. “I greeted them in the hallway.”
A prayer service was held in the Whittier Park community center the afternoon of May 4, shortly after Abdiqani was buried at the Garden of Eden Islamic Center in Burnsville.
About 300 members of the community attended and speakers included members of the children’s family and Rep. Hodan Hassan (62A).
“The fact that you are all here on such short notice is a testament to the spirit of not only Whittier but the Twin Cities as a whole,” Whittier Alliance executive director Kaley Brown said at the service.
Minneapolis police are investigating the incident, which Elder said appears to be an accident. He said Child Protection Services is doing a routine review but that there was an adult watching the children who was deemed “credible and capable.”
A GoFundMe has been set up to help with medical and funeral expenses.