George Gohns (left) and Alex Sharman from Beachlands used
skills they learned through Scouts to save the 5-year old
boy. Photo / Greg Bowker
Two young boys have been praised as heroes after helping
to save the life a 5-year-old boy who was floating face-down in
an Auckland pool.
George Gohns and Alex Sharman, both 12, were swimming with
friends at YMCA Panmure on Wednesday afternoon when they
noticed the young boy "fully submerged in water' nearby.
At first the friends thought the boy was just "joking around"
but decided to investigate when he didn't move.
George, who goes to Beachlands School, told the Herald the
boy's eyes were wide open and that he was not moving, just
drifting under the surface. Still unsure if he was joking
they reached out to him.
"We poked his throat to see if there was anything there and
then bubbles came out," George said.
The pair - both Scouts - grabbed the young boy, holding him
above the water and tilting his head so he would not choke.
The boys dragged the child to the edge of the pool, where an
alerted lifeguard jumped in and pulled him out of the water.
Grant Helleur, YMCA business manager for fitness and
recreation, said the lifeguard spoke to the boy on the side
of the pool where he started responding.
St John quickly arrived to treat the boy, who was transferred
to Starship hospital in a moderate condition.
Despite being proud of his efforts, George said the ordeal
"My legs shook a bit after and then I didn't go in for a swim
for like half-an-hour," he said.
George's mum, Janice, said she was "really, really proud of
She said George was "really freaked" by the incident.
"We live in Beachlands and normally they would go down
swimming in the evening but George was like 'I think I've had
enough of the water today'."
Mr Helleur also praised the boys for taking action. He said
the 5-year-old's mother had also praised the lifeguards and
the two boys. It is believed he had had a seizure.
- Ben Irwin