A distressed community following canal drowning


POSTED: Friday, March 29, 2013 - 1:54pm

UPDATED: Saturday, March 30, 2013 - 9:27am

Concerned parents of a North McAllen neighborhood where a 7-year-old boy accidentally drowned inside a canal Wednesday night are expressing their distress following the tragedy.

Agustin Granado is a nearby resident and he says, "Primarily it is a shame, secondary it doesn't stay in our mind for very long and all it takes is just five seconds and the baby is in trouble and you're in trouble."

Authorities say the boy was playing near the canal off of Ware and Auburn roads when he accidentally fell in.

The father attempted to jump in and rescue him, but the strong currents forced him to abandon his efforts.

Marco Martinez of the McAllen Fire Department  reminds the public to take extra precaution.  Martinez says, "Not only children but adults, everyone needs to pay attention, there is a reason why those signs are out there, don't swim, don't play, there are no lifeguards, there are strong currents, a lot of debris, and a lot of areas that are not well maintained inside the canals."

Which is why parents nearby are speaking out and pleading for the canal to be fenced, in order to avoid tragedies like this one.

Granado says, "If for instance the neighbors got together and pitched in to put a fence and would foot the bill around a mile through this canal area, but who wants to fork in the money?" 

it was just after 10:30 p.m. Thursday night crews recovered the 7-year-old boy's body.  He was identified as John Perri.

Perri attended Hendricks Elementary school in North McAllen, meanwhile as for the tragedy, firefighters remind everyone about the dangers of playing near the canals.

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