Family of 6-year-old boy killed on I-5 release statement, absolve truck driver in tragedy

ALBANY, Ore. -- Police on Thursday released the name of the 6-year-old boy who was reported missing from his Albany home less than an hour before he was struck and killed on Interstate 5 near Albany on Monday night.

According to KPTV in Portland, the boy was identified Thursday as Nathaniel James Hyde.

Police said Nathaniel was reported missing from home at 9:30 p.m. Monday. The Linn County Sheriff's Office dispatched four deputies to search for him along with a canine unit. Less than a half-hour later, state troopers were dispatched to a crash on Interstate 5 south of Albany.

Police said a truck hit the child, but that the driver was cooperating and there was no indication of any wrongdoing.

The family of Nathaniel released a statement Thursday saying, “For the sake of having helpful information we would make known that Nathaniel was moderately to severely autistic and mostly nonverbal. We would also like to say to the truck driver involved that we understand that this accident was not his fault and that our love and prayers are going out to him."