MANATEE — A 6-year-old boy was alive and well in a St. Petersburg hospital Sunday night because of the quick action of three “heroes” who pulled him from a swimming pool and administered CPR.
“Those people absolutely saved a life,” Manatee County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Evelio Perez said of the two men and one woman who pulled the youngster from the community pool at Mira Lago Apartments in the 300 block of 34th Avenue Drive East in Bradenton on Sunday afternoon.
“When they pulled him from the pool, he was not breathing and his lips were blue,” Perez said. “But when emergency medical services arrived, he was breathing on his own and was conscious.”
The identities of the three will be released shortly after the investigation into the near drowning is complete, Perez added.
“The child was doing fine on Sunday night,” Perez said. “They are keeping him overnight for observation.”
It was a woman who pulled the child from the pool and two men who gave CPR, Perez said.
During CPR, breath is blown into the victim’s mouth and pressure is put on the victim’s chest to get the heart to pump blood and the oxygen it carries, needed to sustain life. “They all performed very unselfish acts,” Perez said. “Their actions are to be commended. They are heroes.”
Doctors ran scans of the child’s brain to see if he suffered any brain damage, Perez said. The child’s mother rode with him in an ambulance to All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg.
“His mother was very distraught,” Perez said.
Perez thought the three heroes were all Mira Lago residents .
The injured boy’s mother, who was also looking out for a 2-year-old child, was at the pool at about 3:25 p.m. with the boy, Perez said.
Suddenly, the boy was noticed under water in the shallow end of the pool.
Whether it was the mother’s screams or neighbors noticing a chaotic scene, the Manatee County 911 call center was immediately bombarded.
“We got multiple 911 calls at 3:25 p.m.,” said Captain Mike Turner of the county’s 911 call center. “We gave it a Priority 1 status, life-threatening.“
Since the child was stable when EMS arrived, he was taken by ambulance to St. Petersburg rather than flown in a helicopter, Perez added.
The swimming pool at Mira Lago was closed for a few hours after the incident so the sheriff’s office could take photos of the accident site.
“We must treat it like a crime scene,” Perez said. “That’s a standard practice when we have something like this. We must investigate if there has been neglect.”