Wis. town deals with 2nd tragedy involving children

CENTURIA, Wisc. - A tiny northwest Wisconsin town is reeling after the second tragedy involving residents in the past five months.

In July, Isiah Theis, 2, died after being accidentally locked in a car trunk on his parent's property.

The latest incident was a two-vehicle crash on Thursday afternoon that killed two children and injured three others. The crash occurred on Highway 35 in Prescott, but the children were from Centuria.

Keri Milberg, 32, was driving south when her car collided with a box truck driven by Jose Mendoza, 24, of Rockford, Illinois.

Mendoza and his two passengers were not injured, but two of the four children in Milberg's car, a 5-year-old girl and an 11-year-old girl, were killed.

Two other children, a 5-year-old girl and a 3-year-old boy survived the crash and were rushed to Regions Hospital in St. Paul. Milberg is in critical condition at Regions.

Centuria's 984 residents are wondering what more could happen to their little town. Al's Diner is one of the community's gathering places.

"It is really sad," said Linda Swanson, Al's Co-Owner. "We had the uncle come in this morning and tell us all about it and it was really hard. Then, he started naming off the different people in the accident and he is taking it really hard. He was close to his nieces and grandnieces."

Swanson said she has known Keri Milberg for at least 20 years. She brings her children and other relatives to the restaurant often.

The 11-year-old girl was a student at Unity Schools in Balsam Lake. School officials notified parents and staff of the child's loss.


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment