Father, firefighters rescue toddler in Scott County pool

SADIEVILLE, Ky. (WKYT) - People who own pools know just how much kids look forward to that first swim, but that anticipation also comes with some danger.

"It was a careless mistake on my part," T.J. Wilson said.

Wilson said he was getting the pool ready and doing some other work outside on Sunday afternoon. The gate is usually locked, but that day, it wasn't.

"Before I knew it, my little stepbrother come to me (saying) 'A.J.'s in the pool!'. So I come running around and I dove in and swam to him. His mouth and nose was purple. When your child's born, the love that you have, it's an instant love. To see that laying there lifeless, it's...it's indescribable. It just takes your breath away," Wilson said.

Two-year-old A.J. wasn't breathing. There was no heartbeat.

"Oh man...there was nothing there...I mean...nothing," he said.

So Wilson did the first thing that came to mind. He's never had any CPR training, but he couldn't just do nothing.

"I'd seen it in movies before and I just went with it. I just prayed I was doing it right. I think it was like 3 or 4 times of chest compressions and repeating, I got some water out and then we got some whimpering," Wilson said.

At the same time, off-duty firefighter Jan Southworth was just down the street. He heard the scanner call and came running to take over. A couple of minutes later, more firefighters and paramedics pulled up to finish the job.

"He woke up, expelled a bunch more fluids, looked at me, looked at firefighter Southworth, and we heard the most beautiful sound. He started crying. Most of the time, it's a bad outcome, but to actually save somebody...it erases all the bad days that you have," said Lt. Dennis Dickman of the Scott County Fire Department.

Firefighter Southworth didn't want to go on TV. He said he wasn't a hero, but those who were there might say different.

"What he did was amazing," Dickman said.

"He was awesome! He done an awesome job!" Wilson said.

Doctors expect little A.J. to bounce right back to normal, but Wilson says some things won't ever be the same.

"That's my world, man. It changes the way I'm going to be a dad. To hear him say, 'I want daddy,'...that means more than anything, man....more than anything," Wilson said.

The American Red Cross offers first-aid and CPR training for families.


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