Young boy pulled from Neuse River regained consciousness after 4 minutes of CPR: Witness

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Thursday, June 15, 2023
Boy pulled from Neuse River, revived: Witness
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A young boy had to be rescued from the Neuse River on Wednesday afternoon.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- A young boy had to be rescued from the Neuse River on Wednesday afternoon.

ABC11 spoke to a woman who performed CPR on the boy after his unconscious body was pulled from the river.

Latia Brown said her nephew first noticed the boy floating in the river. He thought at first it was a turtle, but other witnesses realized it was a person and rushed to pull the body out of the water.

"I looked at my sister and said, 'Is this a joke?'" Brown recalled. "I just ran over there and did CPR, and she called the police; it was a lot of other people that helped."

Brown who works as a teacher and recently became re-certified in CPR performed four minutes of chest compressions before she saw signs of life. She said it felt like a lifetime before help arrived.

"They couldn't find their way down here," said Brown

After about four minutes of CPR, She said the boy regained consciousness.

Richard Wilson, another eyewitness on the beach also tried to do his part and help.

"He was lifeless. He was unconscious for a few minutes. Some girl an amateur I can tell. Trying to get him back to life beating on his chest. He was unconscious. I said let me go get my phone and call 911," he said.

Raleigh Fire Battalion Chief Patrick Marks told Eyewitness News it took 10 minutes from the first 911 call for rescue crews to arrive on the scene.

He believes that is where the confusion comes in. 911 callers said Raleigh Beach. Marks said there's also a Raleigh Beach Road.

"You need some signs down here people. Raleigh Beach Eastside. Milburnie Dam because they don't know where they are going" said Wilson.

Shannon Dowling and her son Liam come often to Raleigh Beach knowing the risk they take being off the beaten path.

"It might have been hard for the rescue people to figure out where this place was at. It's kinda like the wild wild west down here. When there are no lifeguards on duty it's swim at your own risk ," she said.

As for Wilson, he said what he witnessed Wednesday has him deeply concerned.

"It's getting dangerous. Kids come out here on the weekend. It's dangerous," he said.

Chief Marks said they are called out to Raleigh Beach maybe three times a year and the cases range from maybe a slip and fall to a near drowning.

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