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March 14, 2001

The near drowning of 3-year-old Brandy Alexandra Reid on Tuesday is Mesa's first incident of its kind this year.

The child's grandmother, Dorothy Reid Thompson, was caring for the girl and three other children about 5 p.m. at a pool in Thompson's trailer park at 2060 N. Center St.

Thompson turned for only minutes to help a 22-month-old she was also looking after. When she turned around, Brandy was at the bottom of the pool.

Thompson pulled the child from the 4-foot deep water and with the help of a bystander administered mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

Mesa firefighters happened to be leaving the same street on another call when two children notified them of the emergency.

The firefighters administered aid to Brandy, who began breathing and crying. She was taken to Desert Samaritan Medical Center. She had been under water for three to four minutes, firefighters said.

The incident comes four days after the drowning of a 4-year-old Ohio boy in north Scottsdale.

Conner Bentley drowned after his mother left him alone for a few minutes. He and his family were visiting friends. His mother pulled him out of the pool and administered CPR, but he was later pronounced dead at Phoenix Children's Hospital.

Firefighters urge those who care for children to watch them at all times near water.

"It only takes a second," Mesa Deputy Fire Chief Mary Cameli said.

Other tips from firefighters:

* Children should always be supervised around pools. The supervisor should not be talking on the phone or reading.

* Keep a phone handy in the pool area for emergency calls. Don't leave to answer a phone elsewhere.

* Toy-flotation devices should not be used for lifesaving.

* Make sure the door to the pool is always locked. Interior pool fences should have self-closing, self-latching gates.

Reproduced with permission from:
The Arizona Republic
Byline: By Lisa Chiu
©Copyright 2001 Arizona Republic

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