Miracle on the Pacific Coast: Boy revives after nearly drowning, being underwater 15 minutes

Posted: 08/14/2011 in all marine news

Joyce Chen –

A little boy has made a mind-boggling recovery after being sucked into the frigid Pacific Ocean – and enduring more than 15 minutes underwater.

After spending the weekend in the ICU of OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portalnd, Ore., Charles “Dale” Ostrander’s parents were thrilled to see their little angel’s miraculous recovery.

The little boy’s brush with death began last Friday on an outing with his church youth group, when a powerful riptide pulled him underwater and sucked him out to sea.

When he was found by rescuers, he was floating without a pulse, two feet below the surface of the water, after 15 minutes deprived of oxygen.

“I expected to say our goodbyes and so did my wife, and we were just prepared for that,” dad Chad Ostrander told the AP. “He really surprised us.”

Damian Mulinix, a staff photographer for the weekly Chinook Observer, dashed to the beach to chronicle the amazing rescue efforts, and spoke about the devastating scene.

“Literally, he was dead for 20 minutes, half an hour probably,” Mulinix said of the recovery.

The other children from the youth group kneeled down to pray as a lifeless Dale was carried to shore.

“They were crying, face-down on the ground, praying – it was a heart-wrenching scene,” the photographer said.

A nearby 12-year-old, Nicole Kissel, who was in the water, immediately reacted to the unfolding tragedy and tried to keep him afloat on her boogie board.

“I let him on the board first, and I got on top of him, grabbed the board and he said ‘Keep kicking, keep kicking,'” she said in an interview.

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