Bystander saves toddler from near drowning

Man saves drowning toddler

AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- If not for the quick actions of a stranger, a toddler may not have survived a near drowning in Augusta.

Sean Scanlon of Dresden was playing with his child around 6 p.m. on Friday at the East Side Boat Landing Playground, which is located along the eastern bank of the Kennebec River.

Officials have not yet released the name of that little boy, but they say that as of this morning, they have identified him and his parents.

Sean Scanlon was watching his son play at the park when people yelling across the Kennebec River caught his attention.

“They said 'there's a kid, there's a kid in the water!'” he said.

That's when he noticed what appeared to be a body floating on his side of the river.

“When getting there I realized it was a little boy,” said Scanlon. “He was completely blue. He wasn't breathing. He was submerged.”

Scanlon told his four-year-old to stay on shore, and dove in the water to rescue the other little boy.

He acted as quickly as possible, but says he “thought it was too late. When I picked him up, his eyes were kind of open. He may have been blue, but something told me I had to try.”

He used his old CPR training to try and save the boy.

That's when first responders showed up - and Scanlon says his son Kaden became the hero.

Kaden “watched the whole thing,” said his dad. “And I could hear all the sirens, so I yelled up to him and I was like 'Go get a fireman and bring him over here.'”

Kaden brought the first responders to his dad. They took over the situation, reviving the drowned toddler and then transporting him in a helicopter.

Throughout the entire emergency - Scanlon says the toddler's parents were nowhere in sight.

Though many online have been quick to judge, Scanlon says he won't blame them until he knows the full story.

“They could have been hardworking parents that just passed out while their kid was playing in the living room,” he says. “Everybody is quick to jump to that parents are neglectful and things like that, but nobody knows the story of these parents.”

Though he dove in the water, he says he couldn't have done this alone.

“If there's one thing anybody can take from this,” said Scanlon. “No matter what the outcome of this little boy - it was from citizens paying attention in the community.”

Police say they have identified the boy and his family, and will release more information soon if they decide to file charges.

Copyright 2016 WCSH


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