There are some things that money simply can’t buy. It includes one’s health and more importantly, one’s life. Although $2 million can be considered to be a relatively large sum of money, it can never heal the pain of losing a child or bring back the loss of a child. The family of Antonio Reyes, a student from Wenatchee High School, reached a $2 million settlement in a negligence lawsuit filed against the Wenatchee School District for their son’s tragic drowning.

The tragic drowning dated back to November 17th last year. The body of 14-year-old Antonio Reyes was found at the bottom of the deep end of the swimming pool after he participated in a physical education class. According to his parents, Antonio was not able to swim. In fact, he may have been underwater for as long as fourty minutes before his body was eventually discovered by his classmates. Initially, the family filed a $15 million lawsuit, stating that the school failed to follow the reasonable safety procedures and was grossly negligent. These factors created the conditions that led to the death of Antonio. “This was a horrible accident that was completely preventable,” stated Sim Osborn, who is the attorney for the boy’s family.

The schools officials were not immediately available for comment. However, Sim mentioned that the settlement will finally allow the family to move on with their lives. This tragic incident also result in certain reforms. One of which is that the district will now impose a certified lifeguard to be on duty when people are in the pool. Aside from that, greater measures will also be made to evaluate the swimming ability of the students. Antonio was among a total of 26 students in the physical education class when the drowning took place. At that point of time, the group was supervised by a single teacher alone and there was no other lifeguard who was present, according to the Wenatchee police report. For the full story, do read it here.

Happy Fish Swim School would like to take this opportunity to remind all members of the public to keep a look out for lifeguards before jumping into a public pool. All of our public swimming complex in Singapore will always have lifeguards on duty. By heading into the pool without any lifeguards on the look out, you are potentially risking your own life. Always bear in mind that water safety is still the top priority for anyone.