Life
Heroic 7-year-old knows he’s family’s only hope and swims for an hour to save their lives
He knew he was their only hope.
Mary Rose Garra
11.08.21

These key facts on drowning are mind-blowing to consider.

Did you know that drowning is the world’s third leading cause of unintentional injury death? According to World Health Organization (WHO), that’s accounting for 7% of all injury-related deaths.

They have reported that,

“Children, males and individuals with increased access to water are most at risk of drowning.”

Pexels - Kindel Media
Source:
Pexels - Kindel Media

In this news report, however, a 7-year-old boy swims a mile to save his father and sister stuck in a river.

A family spent their Friday in the St. Johns River when the incident happened.

St. Johns River is the longest river in Florida, United States, as well as the most important for commercial and recreational use.

YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX

The father was fishing, and his children were playing right next to the boat.

Chase Poust and his 4-year-old sister Abigail went swimming while the boat was anchored. But the current was too strong.

In an interview with News4JAX, the 7-year-old boy said,

“The current was so strong that my sister — she usually hangs out at the back of the boat. And she let go. So, I let go of the boat and I grabbed her, and then I was stuck.”

YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX

Their father, Steven Poust, jumped into the water right away to save the kids.

Chase and his father did not wear a life jacket, unlike Abigail.

“I told them both I love them because I wasn’t sure what’s going to happen,” Steven recalled.

“And I tried to stick with her as long as I could with both of them. Really, I wore myself out, and she drifted away from me.”

YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX

Chase began swimming to shore while his father tried to save his sister.

He would swim for an hour, then float on his back to rest. When asked if he’s getting tired of swimming.

The boy answered, “Oh yes! That’s why I did that. That’s why I floated on my back.”

YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX

Chase eventually made it to the shore and knocked on the neighbor’s door for aid.

Then the help was finally provided when Florida Fish and Wildlife rescued the father and 4-year-old in a boat.

The recovery was also assisted by the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department and the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.

According to the JFRD, the father and the 7-year-old were not required to wear life vests. Because the 7-year-old is older than six and the boat is less than 26 feet long.

YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX

Steven said that,

“We’re here. By the grace of God, we’re here.”

Chase was commended for surviving the current and being able to seek help to save his father and sister.

One commented saying,

“What a brave young boy and quite intelligent too. Thank God!”

YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX
Source:
YouTube Screenshot - News4JAX

Another person left a remark saying,

“What an amazing child!! 🙌🏾🙌🏼So smart!! Life vest at all times. Because anything can happen in a split second!! So grateful that father and children are ok!! 🙏🏾🙏”

The WHO shared some drowning prevention measures, such as,

“Community-based, supervised child care for pre-school children can reduce drowning risk and has other proven health benefits.”

Pexels - Yulianto Poitier
Source:
Pexels - Yulianto Poitier

“Teaching school-age children basic swimming, water safety and safe rescue skills is another approach.”

Hear more about the heroic rescue by clicking the video below!

Please SHARE this with your friends and family!

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By Mary Rose Garra
hi@sbly.com
Mary Rose Garra is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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