Kiryas Joel, NY - Tragedy struck this afternoon in Kiryas Joel as a seven year old girl with special needs died after being struck by a falling bookshelf.

The incident took place at approximately 2:30 PM at the Kiryas Joel Public School.

Kiryas Joel Hatzolah, Kiryas Joel Public Safety and the New York State Police all responded to the scene.

The girl, who has been identified as Ruchie Friedrich, was transported to Good Samaritan Hospital in Suffern where she was pronounced dead.

In a statement released by the Kiryas Joel Village Union Free School District, Supervisor Joel Petlin said, “We are devastated by the tragic accident which took the life of one of our students this afternoon. We are cooperating with the investigation and we are providing grief counseling to students and staff affected by this tragedy. Our heartfelt prayers go out to the family and the community at this difficult time.”