By: KDKA-TV’s Bryant Reed
CORAOPOLIS, Pa. (KDKA) — The family of a 3-year-old boy allegedly killed by his mother’s boyfriend is remembering the child as an “angel.”
Tyler Mason of Burgettstown was arrested on charges of aggravated assault and endangering the welfare of children after allegedly beating his girlfriend’s 3-year-old son, Aiden Lombardi. On Thursday, Mason was charged with criminal homicide.
Lombardi’s family said the boy hadn’t even started to live his life yet. They said nobody deserves to feel how they do.
“He was just a perfect child and I know perfect doesn’t exist, but he was as close as it comes. He was an angel,” said Emily, the boy’s aunt.
Coraopolis Police and paramedics responded to a home on Pennsylvania Avenue on Tuesday for an unresponsive child. Police say Mason told them the boy went unconscious and stopped breathing while he was watching the toddler. But police say Mason beat the boy, causing bruises to the child’s face and head.
Lombardi was taken to UPMC Children’s Hospital with a skull fracture and died from his injuries on Wednesday night.
“There’s nothing in this world that you can say or do to stop any kind of evil like that young man had in his body,” said Bill Cannata, Lombardi’s grandfather.
The boy’s grandfather and two aunts were in Florida when they got the news. The family members rushed to the area and heard the gut-wrenching reality.
“We were just waiting and waiting. And my sister’s mom came down and said he’s gone, and they can’t save him. And I broke down and screamed,” xxx said.
Now, they only have memories.
“He was just learning how to love. He was just learning how to respect. He was just learning how to give everybody the attention,” Cannata said
Mason sits in jail tonight. The family said they have no idea what would make somebody want to hurt a child.
Lombardi’s mom said although this is a tough time, she wants to be able to share his smile with the world. The family has started a GoFundMe.
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