New York Teenager Dies Protecting 3-Year-Old Cousin From Sledding Accident

Renee Hill

“Everyone's calling her a hero. But that was my baby," her mom told a local news outlet.

A 16-year-old from Upstate New York was killed in a sledding accident Saturday while trying to protect her 3-year-old cousin, according to reports.

Renee Hill was riding in a tube down a hill at a park in Lewiston, New York, Saturday morning when she hit a tree, the New York Post reported. The teenager did everything to save her toddler cousin from being injured according to family members.

“She had went down the hill. She had my 3-year-old nephew on with her. She saw the tree coming. Her first instinct was to put her foot down and flip the sled so my nephew wouldn’t get hurt. She hit the tree. Her heart stopped on the way to the hospital,” her mother, Alexis Kraft, told WKBW.

Alexis said it was Renee’s “first instinct” to save her cousin.

“Everyone's calling her a hero. But that was my baby," Kraft said.

Renee was the oldest of four children, according to People, and was a high school sophomore.

Renee’s 3-year-old cousin was treated at the hospital for his injuries and later released, according to the sheriff's office. A GoFundMe page has been set up to help pay for funeral expenses. As of Tuesday it has raised over $27,500 of its $25,000 goal.