2 heroes save 5-year-old from near-drowning at Rochester hotel - KMSP-TV

2 heroes save 5-year-old from near-drowning at Rochester, Minn. hotel pool

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A 5-year-old child nearly drowned at a hotel swimming pool in Rochester, Minn. but the little boy is alive thanks to some quick thinkers who jumped in the pool to pull the boy out.

"It is life changing for all of us," said Luke Long.

Long, a lifelong wrestler and now coach, believes it's his sports instincts and determination that helped save the day, and save a young life.

"To be honest, I think that's the mentality of a wrestler," Long said. "To never stop. Get after it. Don't hesitate -- good lessons we learn as wrestlers."

Coach Long's Howard Lake youth team was in downtown Rochester for the season-ending state championships. The Lakers were unwinding in a hotel swimming pool late Saturday afternoon, having a blast, until someone spotted a 5-year-old boy at the bottom of the pool.

"I heard someone yell, ‘Oh my God,' and saw them pull a limp little boy out of the pool," said Bridey Boese, a nurse practitioner.

Boese described the young child as "completely purple and blue and not breathing." They said they didn't immediately recognize the boy as a member of their close-knit team.

"From what I could tell, there was nothing there," Long said. "I don't know how long he was under. We don't know when his last breath was. We didn't know how long he held his breath for. It was the scariest moment in my life."

Long and Boese snapped into action, teaming up for CPR.

"Luke did compressions, I did respirations," Boese said. "When we heard gurgling, turned him over on the side."

"So we pumped, pumped, pumped again 3 to 4 times, and then we heard something from him," Long said.

The boy would eventually cough up the water and resumed breathing on his own. Paramedics described him as "conscious and alert" by the time they got there.

The pair of heroes are now sharing their story in an effort to make sure others learn proper lifesaving techniques.

"People get worried about having their mouth on someone else's," Boese said. "They teach lay people without the mouth-to-mouth, just compressions. Encourage any and everyone to learn CPR."

REPORTER'S NOTE: The child's family just isn't ready to talk publicly about what happened, but they did want us to share the episode to get the word out about how CPR saves lives. Apparently, the boy somehow got out of his lifejacket. A fully-clothed parent from another wrestling team dove in to pull him up on the pool deck.

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