Dramatic rescue prevents 3-year-old from drowning in Fox Lake
Where's Ike? Cody Wittrock and Anna Wittrock froze. The Moorhead couple had been busy packing and cleaning their cabin on Fox Lake a few miles west of Detroit Lakes Sunday evening. Cody was packing up and Anna was changing the diaper on their 1-y...
Cody Wittrock and Anna Wittrock froze.
The Moorhead couple had been busy packing and cleaning their cabin on Fox Lake a few miles west of Detroit Lakes Sunday evening.
Cody was packing up and Anna was changing the diaper on their 1-year-old. Their 9-year-old son was sleeping and their 7-year-old son was there.
But where was 3-year-old Ike, a little blond boy who loved catching small sunfish with a net on the dock?
He wasn’t inside the cabin, and, pushed by a horrible fear, Cody ran to check Ike’s favorite place.
He was floating in the lake near the dock, the fishing net near him.
That sight was one that “I hope nobody ever has to go through,” Cody said.
Cody, a construction contractor in Moorhead, had his boy out of the water in seconds.
Ike was blue and he wasn’t breathing.
But help was right next door: Cody said a doctor owns that cabin, and he was there immediately and didn’t waste any time, helping Cody do CPR to get the boy breathing again.
Ike gagged and coughed and the color came back into him almost immediately, Cody said. “It made me think he was not under there that long.”
Ike remembers the accident. “He said ‘I fell in, dad, and you saved me.’”
“He was able to revive the child,” said Becker County Sheriff Todd Glander. “The boy was breathing again when EMS arrived.”
The family is very grateful to the doctor next door, but Cody isn’t sure he wants to be named in a newspaper story, so he preferred not to give out the doctor’s name.
“He was extremely helpful,” he said. “Everything that happened went so smooth.”
St. Mary’s EMS was called, and Ike was taken by ambulance to Essentia St. Mary’s Hospital in Detroit Lakes, then taken to Sanford Hospital in Fargo.
“All the doctors in Detroit Lakes and Fargo Sanford have been very positive,” Cody said.
While his parents will be watching him closely the next three or four days for signs of infection, Ike appears to have come through his ordeal better than anyone could hope.
“He’s doing great,” Cody said. “You’d never know anything happened – he was home the next morning.”
The first thing he said was “’I want to go fishing,’” Cody said.
He may have to wait awhile for that, to give his frazzled parents time to mend their nerves.
“His mom and I are a little worried about it. We’re taking this weekend off,” Cody said.
Several things contributed to the accident: The family has a strict life jacket rule near the water.
“He always wears his life jacket,” Cody said. “But we were in the cabin, packing up to go home.”
And their 9-year-old boy, who usually pals around with Ike, happened to be sleeping at the time.
The moral of the story? “Keep a life jacket on your kid,” Cody said. “They’re so fast…”
Young as he is, this isn’t the first time Ike has been in the news: He was the first 2012 baby born at Essentia Health in Fargo.