Only on 12: Boy stable, breathing after almost drowning in Warrenville

Warrenville water park
A boy almost drowned at a water park in Warrenville, S.C., on Thursday. (WRDW-TV / June 21, 2012)
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News 12 at 11 o'clock / Thursday, June 21, 2012

WARRENVILLE, S.C. -- It started out as a normal day at Richardson's Lake Water Park right up until a young child swam under water.

"He never was a distressed swimmer. He just didn't come up," said Travis Spears, the park's owner.

That's when Spears and Leroy Brown jumped into action with about a dozen others.

"I jumped in immediately," Brown said. "I went in, and luckily he was underneath me."

When they pulled the boy out, they started CPR until the ambulance arrived.

"[CPR] is tiring. People can run marathons and not finish. Doing compressions is very serious," Brown said.

Thirty chest compressions, two breaths; 30 chest compressions, two breaths, over and over without stopping until EMS arrived. They performed CPR on a rotating basis to pump blood from a heart that wasn't beating.

"To think that something like that would happen is always a fear," Spears said.

It was a fear realized for a moment, but then better news came.

"We were called and informed that he was being airlifted to MCG and that he was in breathing and in stable condition," Spears said. "I dropped to my knees and thanked the Lord."

The boy remains in stable condition and is still breathing, but for Brown, it was a rush he never wants to experience again.

"It's tough on you," he said. "I'm only 23 years old. I've never seen anything like that happen in front of my eyes after five years of working here."