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4-Year-Old Saves Toddler Sister: 'I Grabbed Her Tummy'

Gray Forrester was in the right place at the right time when 2-year-old Andie fell in the pool
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 18, 2019 9:35 AM CDT

(Newser) – Gray Forrester is just barely school age, but the 5-year-old has already earned the label of hero. WBIR reports that Gray was just 4 during an incident in their Knoxville, Tenn., yard that led to his 2-year-old sister, Andie, almost drowning. Their mom, Laura, said on the day in question she had them in view. But just five minutes later, Andie approached her, drenched. "Andie walked up and was like, 'I falled in the pool! I falled in the pool!'" Forrester tells the station. "She was soaking wet and then I looked at Gray and he was soaking wet, and I just panicked." Gray explains in his own words what happened. "She was doggy paddling," he says. "I grabbed her tummy. I was trying to lift her so she could breathe."

Per Today, Forrester told WBIR that her family moved into their home right around the time Olympic skier Bode Miller's young daughter drowned in a pool, and "it was heavy on my mind and heavy on my heart." She says they pulled out all the stops to ensure the kids would be safe around their own pool, including erecting a safety fence, rigging the doors around the house so they'd beep when opened, and giving the kids instructions to never go outside without an adult or babysitter. It's unclear how the kids accessed the pool. "It happened so fast," Forrester says, adding Andie has since had swimming lessons. Citing the Centers for Disease Control, People notes that drowning kills more kids ages 1 to 4 than any other cause save birth defects. (Read more heroes stories.)

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