Sleeping Oregon girl, 8, dies when tree falls on her home

KOIN photo

OTIS, OR (KOIN) — A tree fell onto a house late Tuesday night, killing an 8-year-old girl who was sleeping in the same room with her younger sister.

Zaylee Schlecht, the daughter of North Lincoln Fire Department volunteer firefighter Ryan Schlecht, was asleep when the tree came down on her house in Otis around 11:15 p.m. Otis is a few miles northeast of Lincoln City.

Zaylee, 3rd-grader at Taft Elementary, was initially trapped, then rushed to a hospital. She was pronounced dead at Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital.

About 18 firefighters — including her father — arrived at the house, 509 N Deer Lane Drive, to lift and cut tree limbs to free Zaylee. Her mother, Melissa Hoag, and 2 brothers were also in the house. Neither they nor Zaylee’s younger sister were injured.

“We care about our people. You know it’s a family that was devastated in the middle of the night by this event,” Capt. Kusz with North Lincoln Fire Department told KOIN 6 News. “We sent out our chaplain to be with the family at this time and we’ll be doing a critical stress debriefing with our people as well.”

The Red Cross is helping the family with temporary housing. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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