Photo courtesy: Delano Herald Journal/Ryan Gueningsman
MONTROSE, Minn. - The driver involved in Friday morning's fatal accident has been identified.
Forty-seven-year-old Robert Mercier of Arlington, Minn., was the driving westbound on State Highway 12 in Montrose when authorities say he ran a red light and his car left the roadway, striking 7-year-old Hayden Solien as he stood on the sidewalk waiting for his school bus.
The car Mercier was driving hit a tree and rolled. Hayden landed several hundred feet away from where he was hit. Both Hayden and Mercier died on the scene.
Robert Mercier's wife briefly spoke to KARE-11 and said, "he was a good husband and a good father."
Mercier was driving home to Arlington from his overnight job in Big Lake where he was a mechanic for Metro Transit's Northstar Rail maintenance facility.
Hayden, a second grade student at Parkside Elementary in Buffalo, will missed by classmates, friends, and family.
"He had an infectious personality," said Tim Solien, Hayden's father. "He was smart, fun-loving, and was a great big brother."
An investigation of the accident is ongoing. In the days to come, the State Patrol will try and determine why Mercier suddenly lost control.
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