A baby who drowned at a popular marina is believed to have
wriggled out of a stroller parked on a narrow walkway beside
Auckland 7-month-old Carlo Domett Caesar died on April 26 at
Coromandel's Whitianga Marina, where his family were on
Paramedics worked to revive the boy after he was pulled from
the water, but he died at the scene.
Police have remained tight-lipped about the incident. But a
boatie who was just a few metres away when the tragedy
happened said it was "a sad and unfortunate accident".
"Just before 10 o'clock I heard all this screaming and
suddenly people were getting off boats and running from all
directions to help," the witness, who asked not to be named,
told the Herald on Sunday.
"The baby had been in a three-wheel buggy on a slipway beside
the family boat.
"He was wrapped in some kind of blanket and I was told he had
somehow wriggled around and popped out the bottom of the pram
and straight into the water, which is about 3m deep.
"I believe the baby was still in the blanket when he went
into the water. Somebody got him out pretty quickly but the
poor wee lad must have swallowed some water and no one could
The local said the infant's parents, Auckland marketing
executive Craig Caesar and his wife Gabrielle, were "lovely
people"and were at their boat at the marina often in the
summer with their other child, 2-year-old Monty.
Marina staff said the family held a boatside service for
Carlo on April 30.
A child's teddy bear perched on a small coil of mooring rope
and flowers were placed at the back of the family boat.
Long-time Whitianga GP Dr David Wilson arrived at the scene
shortly after the infant was pulled from the water and said
the baby could not be saved.
Whitianga Marina manager Darryl Smith said the marina board
had decided not to comment.
"It was simply a tragic accident and that is the guts of it."
Waikato Police said Victim Support was working with the
family but no further details or any public safety messages
would be released as the matter had been referred to the
coroner, who is investigating.
The Caesar family could not be reached for comment.
- Russell Blackstock of the Herald on Sunday