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Tot Drowns as Van Rolls into Lake

An 18-month-old boy has died after spending more than 10 minutes trapped inside a family van that rolled backward and plunged into Lake Pleasant on Tuesday night, police sald.

Another child, about 2 years old, inside the van escaped unharmed. Authorities theorize that one of the two children knocked the gear into neutral, causing the vehicle to roll into the lake and sink 15 feet.

A camper who joined the family's frantic rescue attempt dived into the cold waters, got inside the sub merged van and pulled out the trapped toddler, according to Maricopa County Sheriff's spokesman Deputy David Trombi.

The child was flown in critical condition to St. Joseph's Hospital and Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead. His name was unavailable Wednesday.

Trombi said Donny Lloyd 32, of Glendale, was at Lake Pleasant with his fiancee, her nephew and his child from a previous marriage when their van jerked and rolled backward at about 9:15 p.m.

The two adults were outside the vehicle when the incident occurred. The dead child was Lloyd's son.

Reproduced with permission from:
The Arizona Republic
Written by: Brent Whiting
Photo by: Nancy Engebretson
©Copyright 1999 Arizona Republic

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