6-year-old boy killed when family says brick mantle collapsed on top of him

HENDERSON, N.C. -- The family of a 6-year-old Vance County, North Carolina boy is in mourning after they say a shelf and mantle fell on top of him this weekend as he reached for a toy.

Jayden Baskerville died late Saturday afternoon after the incident that took place inside his family's home.

"She heard the 'bam bam.' And when she ran into the living room, everybody was in shock because that big brick was on his head and on his chest," explained Shirley Venable, describing her granddaughter - Jayden's mother - moments after the crash.

Three days later, bricks and the shelf remained on the ground in the home, as the family is now staying elsewhere.

Venable said Jayden was pronounced dead shortly after arriving at a nearby hospital.

"His father said he told him, 'Daddy, I can't breathe. Daddy, I can't breathe.' And his daddy said he's just torn to pieces because when he said, 'I can't breathe,' blood started gushing up from out of his mouth," Venable said.

Jayden had two younger sisters who Venable said witnessed the accident. However, days later, their parents still have not told them Jayden had passed away.

"They still think he's at the hospital. The parents, they just can't find the words yet to tell them that he's gone. So they keep asking the parents 'when are we going back to the hospital to see Jayden?'" Venable said.

Many of Jayden's belongings - including his bicycle and baseball equipment - are still untouched. Venable showed off his beloved race-car bed she gave him as a gift.

"He's the oldest of the siblings, so all the siblings look up to him. And the two little sisters -- they all looked up to Jayden. He's very smart, and the teachers speak so highly of him," Venable said.

The family had lived at the home for just a few weeks after their previous residence suffered smoke damage after a fire.

Off-camera, Jayden's mother told WTVD-TV that after initially receiving assistance from the Red Cross, the landlord of the first house said the family could move into the Vance County home.

The Vance County Sheriff's Office is investigating the case.

Jayden's funeral is set for Sunday. His family has set up a GoFundMe to help cover funeral expenses.