LAKE MARY, Fla. (FOX 35 ORLANDO) - Orange County Fire Rescue responded to two near drowning Wednesday afternoon at two different hotel pools near the amusement parks.
They say the first call came in at around 1:30 at a Sheraton on Apopka Vineland Road, where a six-year-old boy almost drowned. Orange County officials say a bystander, who happened to be a nurse, stepped in to help and revived the boy.
A father was vacationing at the Sheraton with his daughter. They were by the water slide, when he said he realized a child was in trouble.
"I was sitting at the pool with my seven-year-old daughter, and I heard a woman say someone is drowning," said Jeff Rodrigues.
He looked over and saw that the child's mother was completely calm, as she told him her six-year-old boy was drowning.
"I saw a lifeless body at the bottom of the pool in front of her feet. Immediately jumped in and swam to the bottom."
It all happened in the deep end of the pool at the Sheraton.
"I'm a short guy, so the pool depth is a little more than my height so, as I was swimming and hoisting him up, it was a pretty good effort to get him to the side. I'm a pretty good swimmer, but it's pretty difficult to swim with someone above your head."
When he finally got to the edge of the pool, he said other hotel patrons came and assisted with CPR.
"I checked his pulse, he had no pulse. And as CPR was about to get started, he spit up some water, so we put him on the side and gave him some back thrusts. He opened his eyes and progressively got better."
Paramedics arrived and took the child to the hospital. While this is the first rescue for Rodrigues, he admits he was mentally prepared, he serves as a law enforcement officer in Maryland, who happened to be in Orlando.
"At the right place, at the right time," he said. "We decided to take a break from Disney today."
The other near drowning happened less than an hour-and-a-half later, three miles away at the Hilton Grand Vacations Club on Arrezzo Way, where a five-year-old boy almost drowned, but a bystander stepped in to help. Orange County Fire Rescue says the bystander was Dr. Jordan Weinstein, a cardiologist on vacation from Chicago. The boy was revived.
Both boys were taken to nearby hospitals and are expected to be okay.