Missing toddler dies after being exposed to -33C wind chill

Missing three-year-old toddler Elijah Marsh has died at North York General Hospital.

Despite several hours spent in an attempt to save Elijah after he was found with no vital signs in the frigid snow, doctors at North York General hospital could not save him.

The toddler wandered away from his grandmother’s apartment in the early hours of the morning. The 3-year-old spent six hours exposed in the snow and bitter wind chill of -33 Celsius.

Elijah was caught on a security video wandering out of the lobby of the apartment building at about 4 a.m. with merely a T-shirt, diaper and winter boots. The missing toddler was found several hundred meters away around 10 a.m. Feb.19 without vital signs.

In a desperate attempt to find Elijah, police units from across Toronto engaged in the search operation.  Mounted police, helicopters, dog units were joined by community volunteers, family members and strangers in an attempt to find him.

Toronto Police Search and rescue

Elijah was eventually found between to houses beside the air conditioning units in what appeared to be an attempt to shelter himself from the bitter cold temperature.

Community moved by the events of the missing toddler

The volunteer who found Elijah was moved to tears and too distressed to talk to the media about it.

Canadians and people from around the world were mourning the lost of the little toddler described as a joyful yet shy child.

The parents were present at the hospital when his death was announced and Elijah’s uncle reports that cries could be heard throughout the hospital at the news. Elijah’s parents were seen by onlookers arm in arm crying.

It is reported people have been leaving messages and a memorial outside his grandmother’s apartment where he was staying.

Canadians are sending their condolences using social media and a memorial has been established outside, hoping to bring comfort to the family.



Earlier in the day, the search for Elijah went viral #findelijah

One onlooker reported the police carried him wrapped in a blanket. Elijah was rushed to hospital accompanied by his grandmother.


VINCE TALOTTA/TORONTO STARElijah was last seen by his grandmother when she put him to bed at 9.30 p.m. wearing a T shirt and a diaper.

He was reported missing from his bed around 7.30a.m. Feb. 19. Police released security footage of Elijah captured at 4.05 a.m.  in the lobby of the apartment.

Police release CCTV Elijah 4.05.a.m
TORONTO POLICE SERVICES release CCTV Elijah 4.05.a.m

The weather was a considerable factor in the survival of the 3-year-old as environment Canada had issued a extreme cold alert for the city of Toronto. .

#FindElijah I feel like the whole city is waiting to exhale, to see if he’s all right. 2h2 hours ago

Neighbours report that he lived with his grandmother and often visited his aunts who also live in the apartment building.

Elijah is described by neighbours as “a happy kid” who loved to run and play on the slides. The grandmother was often seen dropping him to day care always on time and he always looked well cared for, neighbours report.

Police Chief Bill Blair told reporters following a police board meeting at 40 College St. that Elijah’s death has affected the entire city. He called the circumstances that led to Elijah’s death “tragic” and vowed the city will do everything it can to support the family.

Chief of Police Bill Blair
About News Desk 796 Articles
The Oakville Sun News Desk is responsible for the editorial content you see published on this site. The content is the work of Sheridan journalism students as they learn their skills and prepare for working in the field.