A pregnant Minnesota mom of two stepped up and became a hero on July 21 when a day at the lake suddenly turned dangerous.
Stephanie Swedberg, a former lifeguard, was in the middle of teaching one of her twin sons how to float as they relaxed at Crystal Beach Park around 11 a.m. The trip to Crystal Lake was unusual for Swedberg, as she usually goes to church on Sunday mornings.
However, the 33-weeks-pregnant mom was looking forward to giving her 3-year-old twin boys a few basic swimming lessons. She decided to watch the church service online instead and spend a little time on the water.
“I’ve just known with these guys that I wanted them to learn how to swim as soon as possible,” she told KMSP-TV.
The main reason she wanted to start early teaching her kids about water safety was to avoid any scenario where they might “panic in a situation that they can’t touch the bottom.”
But while she was helping one of her boys learn to float, Swedberg suddenly heard a woman’s screams nearby.
Looking over, she saw a woman pushing her way into the lake and calling frantically for help.
Out in the lake, a group of boys Swedberg estimated to be between the ages of 10 and 14 were swimming and playing together. But one of them wasn’t playing anymore.
“I didn’t realize anything was off until I saw one of the moms fully dressed, sprinting into the water and screaming for somebody to help her son,” she said. “Then I looked over and I saw one of the boys unable to keep his head above the water.”
He wasn’t screaming,” she explained. “He was just thrashing around, bobbing a little bit.”
Swedberg quickly got her son to safety before racing to rescue the drowning boy.
As an expert in the water and a former competitive swimmer, the pregnant mom easily retrieved the little swimmer from the lake and brought him to safety.
Once on land, she encouraged the young boy to continue taking his swimming lessons and to even become a lifeguard someday.
Although she had worked as a lifeguard for years, it was the first time Swedberg had ever saved someone from drowning.
She praised the boy’s mother for noticing that her son was in distress before it was too late, especially since the entire ordeal had happened so quietly.
Swedberg also encouraged the grateful mom, along with other parents, to make sure they educate their children about swimming.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, about one in five drowning victims are children under the age of 14.
By providing swimming lessons and added safety features such as life vests and arms floats, as well as ensuring that their kids don’t swim in water with dangerous currents, parents can make a drastic difference preventing accidental drownings.
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