Reporting Holly Wagner
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A Hudson, Wis. family is back home from a trip that took a frightening turn.
The Grundstrom family was on vacation at a national park in Utah when 6-year-old Cody Grundstrom nearly drowned.
His 10-year-old sister, Madison, who was with him when it happened, said he’s back to being a ball of energy since the day of the accident.
“He’s plain old Cody again,” she said, adding that “sometimes I have nightmares about it. So I try not to think about it.”
Madison and Cody were swimming in the shallow end of a waterfall at Capitol Reef National Park in Utah.
“It felt like something tripping me,” said Cody.
He was sucked under water and nearly drowned.
“Just because your child is a good swimmer — don’t think that something like this can’t happen,” said his mom, Jenney Grundstrom.
His dad Kevin Grundstrom recalled how quick it felt.
“It happened so fast. It was mad panic.”
The Grundstroms said the quick response from everyone involved saved their son’s life. Madison saw Cody’s flip-flop floating in the water, his dad went in after him, and an ER nurse and fire captain hiking nearby got Cody breathing again.
“Learn CPR. We know CPR but we were fortunate that there were people who could take over who had a lot more experience than we did,” said Jenney Grundstrom.
She said they plan to take a CPR refresher course because it’s a miracle Cody survived.
“That’s God saying, ‘here you go you can have him back. I was just testing you,’” she said.
The Grundstroms said the near-death experience has made them all appreciate one another even more.
“Take more time to give more hugs, more kisses, more I love yous, play catch and take that time because it can be taken away instantly — and at that point in time, it’s too late,” said Kevin Grundstrom.
Meanwhile, Cody has gone swimming again. He says he now wears floaties or a life jacket and urges other kids to do the same.
The Grundstroms have stayed in contact with Talli and Jay Torgerson, the couple who did CPR on Cody. The family said the Torgersons came to visit Cody in the hospital in Utah. They plan to stay in touch.