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Boy Fights For Life After Falling In River

February 13, 1989

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) _ An 11-year-old boy who fell through ice on the Great Miami River and was submerged for about 30 minutes could survive the ordeal, according to doctors.

Deon Jones of Dayton was listed in critical condition today at Children’s Medical Center. Doctors said he began breathing again after rescuers pulled him from the icy water just north of downtown Sunday afternoon.

″We believe he was under about 30 minutes,″ said Dr. Richard Donnini, who treated the boy before he was tranferred to Children’s Medical Center. ″He does have a pulse and he is starting to respond. He does have a chance.″

Jones fell through the ice sometime after 1:30 p.m. Sunday, according to Dayton police. Two other children who were with him ran to get help, and fire department divers used extension ladders laid over the ice to rescue Jones, who was about 50 feet from shore, authorities said.

Jones ″was face down in the water,″ said firefighter Tom Bourquin. ″His jacket was making him float a little bit.″

Officials said the cold water, which can reduce many body functions and thus limit the need for oxygen, gives the boy a better chance.

District Fire Chief Jim Dunham estimated the boy had been under water 20 to 30 minutes and appeared to not be breathing when placed in the amblance.

″This is one we can save. If he hasn’t been in there too long, we can save him,″ Dunham said. ″We got to him quick and we had the right people with the right training there.″

Donnini said the boy’s body temperature had dropped to 80 by the time he arrived at the hospital.

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