Boy nearly drowns on St. Joe River; father, police come to the rescue

MENDON, Mich. —  A close call on the water in St. Joseph County.

The Michigan State Police Marshall Post says a 7-year-old boy apparently fell into the St. Joseph River in Mendon on Wednesday, around 4:50 p.m. The location is by Mill and Fremont streets.

The child had been pulled from the river by his father by the time Trooper Erik Gantert arrived on the scene. MSP says the trooper saw the boy was in a “state of agonal breathing” and in significant danger of death. So, Trooper Gantert began rescue-breathing techniques while Mendon Police and Fire assisted in monitoring the child’s pulse and air intake. This went on for 15 minutes.

MSP says in a news release the boy eventually began to breathe more regularly while “coughing up river water”.

A South County Kalamazoo ambulance arrived at about the time the child was returning to a normal color – and crying, according to police.

He was driven to Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo for further medical attention.

State Police say the boy and his father are both from Mendon.

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