YMCA holds swim lessons to promote water safety

This summer, the YMCA will teach 1,000 children water safety through its swimming program

HOUSTON - Swimming pools can look inviting for people of all ages during hot temperatures, but things can turn dangerous, or even deadly in an instant.

Jesus Lopez was working in a nearby apartment Thursday afternoon when he heard screams coming from the pool area below.

An unresponsive 9-year-old boy had just been pulled from the water.

The boy is alive thanks to Lopez's quick actions.

Lopez, a maintenance worker performed CPR until paramedics arrived and rushed the boy to the hospital.

The boy remains hospitalized at Texas Children's Hospital.

Within an hour, a different accident would claim the life of a 3-year-old child at another apartment complex pool.

That drowning was on the mind of Susanne Steiger as she supervised her granddaughter, Nayla, at the Alief Family YMCA pool.

"Just 3-years-old. The same age as my granddaughter. It's really sad to have a child lose a life when its so easy to take them to a swimming lesson and let them learn," said Steiger.

This summer, the Alief Family YMCA will teach 1,000 children water safety through its swimming program.

The executive director advises parents to enroll their child in a program as soon as possible.

The YMCA offers classes for babies as young as six months old.

"We really want the kids to have an opportunity to have a love for water at the earliest age possible, as well as have the opportunity to teach them this life skill," said Kevin Kebede.

Experts from Texas Children's Hospital want to remind parents a drowning can happen in an instant.

They said proper supervision is a must, that means without distractions.

"Most parents watching this will think, 'It won't happen to me... It will happen to the parents next door or maybe down the street, but it won't happen to me,'" said Kristen Beckworth with the Center for Childhood Injury Prevention.

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