Family faces tragedy after toddler drowns in pond

(WLNS) – It’s every parent’s worst nightmare, losing their child, a nightmare one Clinton County family is living in.

Sunday around 2 p.m. a family on the 12000 block of Warm Creek Drive lost their child in a matter of minutes.

As the family moved into their new home, their 21 month old boy wandered down to the pond behind the house, and was found by a family member minutes later face down.

Despite efforts by family to rescue him, the boy died just an hour later in a nearby hospital.

“It’s just a horrible, horrible tragedy,” Clinton County Sheriff Larry Jerue said.

Jerue says, in less than ten minutes, a family’s elation about moving into a new home turned into complete and utter devastation.

“People in the house thought that he was with people in the garage, people in the garage thought that the child was inside the house with them.”

Sheriff Jerue says in the chaos of moving furniture into the Watertown Township home, the toddler walked down to the pond in the back yard.

“They can just wander off in a blink of an eye,” Jerue said.

Mary Kay Gavitt says the tragedy of losing a child to drowning is more common than people think.

“Drowning is the number one accidental death of children ages 1 to 4,” Mason Public Schools Community Educator of Aquatics Director Gavitt said.

She says there is a way to help prevent these accidents from happening.

“Float and roll.”

Gavitt says, it’s never too soon to teach your child water safety. In fact, she says babies can be taught how to float as young as 6 months old.

Sheriff Jerue says this family’s loss is just one more reminder that it only takes a second for a deadly accident to happen.

“This is all hard, on all the first responders, the family obviously they’re devastated, and its a very difficult time for all.”

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