"It can happen in an instant"

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Here's a timely start-of-summer safety reminder from Tulsa World sports editor Mike Strain, who remembers the time when his son (and my nephew) nearly drowned in their neighborhood's pool:

I grabbed my son’s limp body by the arm and pulled him out of the water.

His face was the scary kind of white you associate with death. His lips were purple. His eyes were wide open, but he wasn’t moving.

About 10 years ago, my son could have drowned in a swimming pool as I sat about 15 feet away daydreaming in the sun. I never saw him jump into the five-foot end. Never realized that a fearless 3 year old who couldn’t swim was under water.

He had taken the “floaties” off his arms. He never liked those. Undetected by me, my wife and a lifeguard at our neighborhood pool, he jumped into the water. I don’t know how long he had been there – less than a minute probably. My wife was in the pool, and asked, “Where’s Jared?”

And then I saw him. He was about a foot under the water, arms stretched to both sides like he was about to give a welcoming hug. He was facing the sky and his eyes were wide open. He wasn’t moving. I will never forget the image – that moment when you don’t know if your son is going to live.

You can't take your eyes off them for a minute.

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Thanks for that important reminder.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on June 18, 2007 11:47 AM.

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