PORT OF SPAIN –– Dexter Jones collapsed on the banks of the Coorsal River in Gran Couva yesterday, after the body of his seven-year-old son Jordell Jones was pulled out of the river.
Jones, a Standard 1 pupil of Gran Couva RC School, died around 1:45 p.m. after he slipped off a concrete pathway and fell into a deep part of the river. The incident occurred a few miles away from the family’s La Vega Road, Gran Couva home.
Jones, who wanted to become a soldier, was playing in the water with his siblings Joshua, 14, Lashawn McKenna, 12, Kayla, 6, and Kaylan, 5, when tragedy struck. His mother Josanne Simmons said she was watching her children laughing and running when Jones slipped off the river bed.
“He was jumping about and running after the crabs. He was in a joyful mood. He was telling me, ‘Mummy, Mummy, look I am a fish!’,” a tearful Simmons recalled. She said the sides of the river were slippery and her son slipped off the concrete, hit his head and fell into the deep side of the river, situated under the bridge.
“I called my husband and he started to search,” Simmons cried. Dexter, who appeared to be numb with shock, said: “I searched for him, but I couldn’t feel him in the water. There was too much slush.”
Candace Brown, who was close by, quickly ran up the
street and called out to her brother Christian Brown. Christian, who knew the river well, managed to pull out Jones about ten minutes later.
“I felt his foot and then I pulled him up. The water on that side was about nine feet deep. His face was already blue. My cousin John Campbell and I took turns in doing CPR. He started to get some colour on his face but we did not get a pulse,” Christian said told the T&T Guardian.
Candace contacted the Gran Couva police who arrived shortly thereafter, placed Jones in the police jeep and took
him to the Couva District Hospital where doctors pronounced him dead. Simmons said her eldest son Joshua was very distraught about the death.
“Joshua came down for the weekend and that was why we decided to go to the river. This was a perfect weekend,we had no quarrels,” Simmons said. An autopsy will be doneat the Forensic Science Centre in St James today.
Acting Sergeant Noel, Acting Corporal Alicia Soodeen and Corporal Peter Cumberbatch visited the scene yesterday, and are continuing investigations.