Nightmare to miracle: 2-year-old survives near drowning

Jacksonville boy found at bottom of pool recovering, now 5 years old

By Elizabeth Campbell - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Earlier this month, a 5-year-old Clay County boy died after being pulled from a pond and Olympic skier Bode Miller’s 19-month-old daughter Emeline drowned in a neighbor’s pool.

We hear about these child drownings too often.

A Jacksonville couple whose son nearly drowned while on vacation a couple years ago wants to share their frightening journey with other families.

"We found him at the bottom of the swimming pool. He was unresponsive and very cold, very blue, no heartbeat," said Ashley Green.

The Greens were spending the 2015 Christmas holiday at Ashley's parents' house in Jacksonville, Texas. They would stay there for several more months, praying for their 2-year-old son, Bo, to survive.

"Everybody was in the waiting room," Bo's father, Jeremy Green, said. "You don’t know what it is. It could be them sitting up talking to him, or they could just be cooking their thoughts and trying to tell you that your son has passed away."

God had a different plan for Bo. When he was taken of the ventilator after 16 days, the parents said they knew their son was going to survive, but they didn’t know if he would ever be the same. 

"They told us he would never do anything -- maybe move his eyes, maybe move his head -- but he wouldn’t be able to walk or talk," Ashley said. "They gave us absolutely no hope. It was devastating."

But Ashley and Jeremy refused to give up hope. They stayed positive and continued to pray, and it worked. Two and a half years later, Bo is up and playing with his two older sisters.

GALLERY: Family photos of Bo's recovery

The family calls Bo a miracle. 

"I always say,' Life is crazy, but it’s good.' It’s a good life," Ashley said. "So we just look forward to the future. We have fun. We enjoy every day. We just believe that Bo is going to continue to get better. He’s going to live a normal life. The sky's the limit for Bo and for us."

Cause of death of Florida children under 10

Florida Department of Health Bureau of Vital Statistics' breakdown on cause of 511 children's deaths in 2016.

The family said they couldn’t have gotten through the ordeal without family and friends, the staff at Dallas Children’s Hospital and the Navy. Jeremy spent time with the Blue Angels, on the USS Iwo Jima and is currently based at NAS Jacksonville. The Greens said they’re very grateful for the Navy’s  support. 

"My goodness, these guys out there, they were real family. We were trying to survive out there financially and they were giving everything," Jeremy said.

Bo suffered a brain injury, so he will continue to undergo rehab for years to come.  

Bo will be 5 in November and he’s in an exceptional student education class at Sable Palm Elementary School, which Ashley said he loves.

Bo's family members said what happened to them can happen to anyone. They encourage parents to put locks on doors and fences around pools, know CPR and be extra alert when you are at an unfamiliar place.

And if the worst happens, they encourage you not to give up faith. Bo is their miracle and they couldn’t be more proud.

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