Toddler Drowns at Lake Whetstone in Montgomery Village (VIDEO & PHOTOS)

Montgomery County police officers have identified the toddler who was pulled out of Lake Whetstone in Montgomery Village on Friday evening.

Police Captain Paul Starks said 22-month-old Malik Bojang died at a local hospital.

An investigator, in the medical examiner’s office, confirms the cause of death was an accidental drowning.

“Our hearts go out to the family of this little boy,” said Starks. “There are no words to describe what his family is going thru.”

According to Starks, the boy was at Lake Whetstone Park with his family around 7:30 p.m. on June 2nd when he was reported missing. The lake is adjacent to a playground.

“Our 9.1.1 center received a call for a missing child along Lakeshore Drive at the park there that is right off Montgomery Village Avenue,” Starks said. “We responded.”

Just minutes later, Starks said dispatchers received another call that a passersby had pulled a young child from the lake.

“He and a police officer began life saving measures on that child until fire rescue got there … and began advance life saving procedures,” Starks said.

According to Starks, the young boy was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The day after the tragedy, a memorial with flowers and cards was spotted alongside the shore of Lake Whetstone. On social media, a Go Fund Me page has been launched.

At a news conference over the weekend, police and fire rescue officials urged residents to take precautions when around water this summer.

In this MyMCMedia Extra video, below, Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson Pete Piringer talks about the case and provides some water safety tips.

According to the MCFRS website, drowning is the second leading cause of death for children ages 14 and under.

Below, are some water safety tips that are posted on the MCFRS website:

  • Never leave children unattended around any body of water (bathtubs, pools, ornamental backyard ponds, etc.).
  • Learn to swim. But remember – even good swimmers can drown.
  • Learn CPR.
  • Pay attention to local weather conditions and forecasts.
  • Watch out for the “dangerous too’s” (…too tired, too cold, too far from safety, too much sun, too much strenuous activity.)
  • Always have a phone.
  • Know where your children are at all times.
  • Don’t rely on substitutes. The use of floatation devices and inflatable toys cannot replace parental supervision. Such devices could suddenly shift position, lose air, or slip out from underneath, leaving the child in a dangerous situation.

Sonya Burke

About Sonya Burke

Sonya Burke is the Multimedia Manager at Montgomery Community Media (MCM). You can email story ideas at sburke@mymcmedia.org or reach her on Twitter @SonyaNBurke.

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