• Heather Murray

Sunday Survival Story: Not Even Our Pool

Updated: Jun 21

Parents Preventing Childhood Drowning Presents: Sunday Survival Stories: Not Even Our Pool

Every Sunday, we will share a story of a non-fatal drowning, discuss where things went wrong, and give some pointers on how to prevent it from happening to the people you love. Thankfully, these stories have happy endings for those involved, but sadly, we lose too many people to drowning every year. We hope examining these real-life stories help put the dangers of water into perspective and help you introduce various principles of water safety to your family!

Today’s story is a little different from normal. It originated from a facebook post made by Gavin’s mom after he went missing. See her words below:

“So today, Gavin snuck out of the house. He then ran down the driveway, crossed the street, ran down the neighbors driveway, went around the side of their house, got into their backyard, and fell into their pool.

Let that one sink in.

How is he not dead right now? Their 7 year old son Adrian happened to be in the backyard at the time and saw him go in. He started screaming for his mom and took it upon himself to pull Gavin out of the pool. Thank god for him!!!! This little boy is a hero and deserves to be recognized because honestly not every kid would do that!

Claudia and Nabil: yall have done a great job!!!

Edit: Gavin is 2.5 and still in diapers. He is a precocious wee terrorist.

Edit 2: This backyard is secure, but the fence is a 5' ranch style fence with a wire chicken fence stapled to it which is easy to climb, similar to chainlink.”

Thanks to the quick-thinking actions of 7yr old hero Adrian, Gavin is safe and sound back at home, but this situation happens too often across the nation, sometimes with tragic endings. What really stands out to me here is just how much Gavin went through to get to pool. He snuck out of the house, climbed over his fenced in yard, crossed the street alone, and found a neighbor’s backyard pool. This should really open all of our eyes to how resourceful and adventurous children can be. Even though some layers of protection were available, such as the fence in his own yard, Gavin found a way to get past it all and enter the water. This is why we always try to think outside of the box and implement as many layers of protection as we can. There is no such thing as drown-proof, so we must be aware of the dangers and do our best to mitigate them. Children are naturally drawn to water, so always check the water first when children are missing. Add another layer of protection onto your fence by also having an alarm system and a protective lock. Gavin didn’t even have his drowning experience at his own home pool- the pool was down the street! Make sure when you are talking to your family about water safety that you really think of all the resources for water around you- a creek in the backyard, the bath tub, a kiddie pool, and even pools and natural bodies of water outside your home and yard in your neighborhood!

Look for sources of water all around you and discuss with your family how you can prevent drownings in different types of water. Have fun, be safe, and be prepared!


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