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Local News

Family of former Lockport resident seeks to raise funds after his tragic death

Brother said the former Lockport resident was fatally struck by vehicle

A 28-year-old father of two children who once lived in Lockport was struck and killed by a pickup truck in Florida, according to his family.

Oak Park resident Robert Pappalardo set up a GoFundMe page for the family of his late brother Jacob Weinert, who was killed Wednesday while commuting to his job as a forklift operator in Tampa, Florida, according to the GoFundMe page.

The GoFundMe’s web address is bit.ly/2O9fSPR.

Weinert, who grew up in Lockport, was working in Florida while his fiancée and two children lived in Lockport, according to the GoFundMe. He was riding his bicycle when a driver struck him and fled the scene.

Pappalardo said in an update on the GoFundMe that the person responsible for hitting Weinert surrendered to police.

Pappalardo said his brother’s dream was to raise enough money so his family could move to Florida. He said he and his fiancee wanted to raise their children in Florida.

“Suddenly and tragically, that dream was taken away from Izabel and their children, Jasper and Sapphire,” Pappalardo said.

The GoFundMe has a goal of raising $10,000, and had raised about $5,375 as of Wednesday evening.

“Proceeds raised will be used to provide assistance with any expenses related to transporting Jacob back to Illinois and/or burial services. Proceeds will be given to Jacob’s fiancée, Izabel,” Pappalardo said.

The fundraiser has 90 donors thus far and has been shared more than 740 times across the web.

The online fundraiser seeks to raise money to bring Weinert’s body back to his family in Illinois “where he can be laid to rest,” according to the GoFundMe.

Additional donations will go toward the support of Weinert’s children.

Weinert graduated from Lockport Township High School in 2009, the GoFundMe said.

A woman who contributed to the GoFundMe said that Weinert was “one of the kindest people I’ve ever met.”

“He had such a big heart and was trying his best,” she said.

Another woman who contributed to the GoFundMe said that Weinert was “one of the sweetest and funniest men I have known.”

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