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2-YEAR-OLD DROWNS AT POOL PARTY

August 5, 2000

A children's pool party turned tragic Friday afternoon with the drowning death of a 2-year-old girl.

Natalie Rackley was one of nine children attending a pool party at an apartment complex in the 15200 block of South Power Road, said Sgt. Don Rosenberger of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

Three adults were supervising the party, including the girl's mother, he said.

But her mother and another adult walked to the complex's laundry room at about 2 p.m., leaving Natalie sitting alone at the edge of the shallow end of the pool. She was wearing inflatable floaties around each arm.

A man at the pool, who was watching over some children at the deep end of the pool, was the only supervisor at the time and got distracted, authorities said.

''He had a child of his own who was sitting in a car seat at the edge of the pool,'' Rosenberger said. ''His child stood up and started walking around. He got up to prevent her feet from burning on the concrete.''

During this time, Natalie somehow slipped into the pool.

About five minutes later, the man saw Natalie at the bottom of the pool, without the floaties around her arms.

A Rural/Metro Fire Department official gave CPR instructions over the phone to an adult on the scene. However, when paramedics arrived, Natalie was not breathing and had no pulse, Rosenberger said.

Reproduced with permission from:
The Arizona Republic
Byline: By Carlos Miller, The Arizona Republic
©Copyright 2000 Arizona Republic

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