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Community reaches out to help
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Community reaches out to help


The Mennonite family involved in a tragic horse-drawn buggy accident Thursday morning is still recovering from their injuries.

Mervin Shirk, 7, was pronounced dead after the family's buggy was struck by a pickup truck near Liberty Blueberry Farms on Route OO near Route DD between Farmington and Fredericktown. 

Alice Shirk, 50, and Dorcas Shirk, 21, were seriously injured and airlifted to Barnes Hospital in St. Louis. Miriam Shirk, 10, and Titus Shirk, 12, were seriously injured and airlifted to St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Allen Shirk, 19, who was operating the buggy, received minor injuries and was treated at the scene by the St. Francois County Ambulance District.

According to friends of the family, as of Friday evening, Titus was still in critical condition with a head injury, broken neck, and two broken legs. Dorcas suffered a broken leg but was released earlier in the day Friday.

The family's mother, Alice, had suffered a broken wrist and brain bleeding after the accident but doctors said that the bleeding has since stopped. Miriam reportedly suffered a broken pelvis and is still in traction at the hospital. 

Many community members have stepped up since the accident, donating food, ice, pillows, and making monetary donations to help with medical costs.

As of early Friday, neighbors had set up a cardboard box for donations near the front of the Mennonites' Home Gardens Community Market off Old Fredericktown Road.

Members of the Mennonite community have stressed that they are asking for nothing more from the public than prayers.

The market will be closed Tuesday for the boy's funeral. 


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