CLEVELAND COUNTY, N.C. - A Cleveland County family is mourning after a tree fell and killed a 5-year-old boy Saturday afternoon.
Investigators said it happened when two children were playing outside of a home on Kim Drive in Patterson Springs after 4 p.m.
Officials said a rotted tree fell Saturday morning and branches of surrounding trees prevented it from initially falling completely to the ground.
Later that afternoon, police said 5-year-old Jaylin Baisden -- who was visiting his aunt and playing with his 6-year-old cousin -- reached down to pick up a piece of bark on the ground when the tree fell on his head.
The other child ran into the house to alert the adults. They and other neighbors ran outside to try to help the boy until paramedics arrived.
“We tried to pick this tree up and it is so heavy,” said aunt Jamie Baisden.
Relatives said Jaylin was born fighting for his life. He was born premature and spent three months in a hospital.
When family members realized he was still breathing after being hit by the tree, they thought he may survive this too.
"He struggled just to breathe in this world, you know, and at 5 years old,” uncle Bradley Thombs said.
Police said Baisden died at the hospital an hour later.
Officials said the incident remains under investigation.
Family members spent Monday making funeral arraignments.
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