Wedding photographer saves drowning toddler mid-ceremony

2015-11-30 06:27
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Port Edward - A quick-thinking wedding photographer saved a drowning 5-year-old at the Estuary Beach in Port Edward on Saturday - right in the middle of a marriage ceremony.

“It is such a damn good feeling to save the child’s life,” said Chantelle Botha, who was taking photographs at the beachside ceremony on Saturday afternoon.

The modest heroine said she felt an impulse to turn around towards the surf.

“I don’t know what told me to turn around and look. I saw two bigger kids pulling a child out of the water.

“I just dropped my camera and I ran…”

Botha said that when she got to the little boy, he had no pulse.

After she began resuscitation procedures, “I got a faint pulse back”.

Sea rescue officials and lifeguards then came on scene and carried on with medical assistance.

However, Botha’s efforts had been so effective, that the little one did not even need to be put on a ventilator.

Botha said the boy was part of a church group of children out for a day of sun and sand. 

No adults

She said that there did not appear to be any adults supervising the children – although there was an older girl overseeing their activities.

Botha said that she had learnt first aid skills, both by attending courses, and also by watching her husband, a Netcare 911 paramedic manager for Margate, at work.

“I’ve been on calls with him; I’ve watched how it gets done.”

Meanwhile, Botha’s colleague kept clicking away to capture special moments for the newly-weds – who due to their position on the beach – had not noticed the commotion.

Their celebration continued – and later, when it finally “kicked in” what she had done, Botha said she too was able to take some pride in her actions.

"It was just a quick response…  Shame, he was just a baby.”

Read more on:    durban  |  drownings

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