DAYTON, Texas -

A Liberty County family is in mourning after a toddler was killed by a kicking horse Wednesday night, Dayton police said.

They said the 3-year-old was at the family's home in the 1000 Block of County Road 6479 in the Woodland Hills Subdivision when he was injured.

Police said the child, identified as Colton, was kicked in the chest.

His parents started driving him to a place where he could get help and called 911.

Investigators said they were eventually met by EMTs at a nearby grocery store. 

They said crews worked to keep the boy alive until a medical helicopter arrived.

He was taken to Memorial Hermann Hospital in the chopper where doctors worked to save him for more than an hour before he died, according to police.

Detectives said they are still trying to figure out how the toddler ended up so close to the animal and how he was injured.