“I hope I was here for a reason. God put's us where we belong,” George Rogowski said while reflecting on what he encountered on Thursday.
The 78 year old had been sitting in his own backyard when he noticed a car pull into the church parking lot on Union Road. “I didn't pay attention. I just sat there until I heard the little boy screaming. But, I knew it was a red car. I didn't know who was driving.”
Rogowski said he immediately checked on the boy and called 911. He said the 2 year old was scared but not hurt. “So many things went through my mind at that time. I just couldn't understand why somebody would do that.”
Rogowski also found a cell phone in the stroller. He believes that's ultimately how Cheektowaga were able to trace him back to Raina Voll's apartment on French Road.
Police said that's where they discovered the bodies of the toddler's mother, Raina Voll and his brother, Leo Klinger.
Klinger was a student at Cayuga Heights Elementary School in Depew. The school didn’t return our request for comment on Friday.
Voll was a waitress at the Olive Tree Restaurant in Lancaster. Co-workers said she was a great employee and loving mother.
“This is obviously a tragedy for the entire community, including us in the police department,” said Cheektowaga Assistant Police Chief, James Speyer. “We feel terrible for the family and the friends of this tragedy.”
A small memorial of balloons and stuffed animals now sits outside the Voll's apartment.
Police said the toddler who was left at the church is now in the custody of his birth father. Rogowski's glad he was there to keep him safe. “I couldn't imagine anyone leaving a child in the hot sun and just, he had his little pacifier in his mouth. He was dressed nice. But he just kept screaming.”
|Live video, the latest news and no surveys - download the WKBW app|
|News, forecast and Bills newsletters delivered to your e-mail inbox|