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Robeson toddler drowns in watery ditch

Posted April 25, 2013

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— A 2-year-old died Wednesday evening after wandering away from a Rowland home and falling into a water-filled ditch nearby, authorities said Thursday.

Zaymon Locklear was outside his aunt's home at 4889 Cabinet Shop Road shortly after 7 p.m. with several of his cousins when, family members said, he wandered over to a 2-foot-deep ditch that runs along a nearby farm field.

Marlon Jacobs said his nephew had borrowed his fishing rod and likely wanted to check out the ditch, which teems with tadpoles.

Kimberly Locklear, Zaymon's aunt, said the boy had been outside for about five minutes when she noticed he was missing. Her son found him in the ditch.

"When he got here, he said, 'Mama, he's in the ditch! He's in the ditch!" Locklear said. "By the time I jumped in that ditch and pulled him up and laid him right there, that's when I went to doing CPR."

While Locklear tried to revive Zaymon, someone called paramedics. Resuscitation efforts continued until the boy was pronounced dead at Southeastern Regional Medical Center in Lumberton.

"People (were) around him, touching him, just praying and begging for him to come back," Locklear said.

Jacobs said he thinks Zaymon dropped the fishing rod into the water and went in to retrieve it.

Ditch where Zaymon Locklear drowned Uncle believes boy died while trying to fish

Lt. Kathy Torre of the Robeson County Sheriff’s Office said the case remains under investigation, and Robeson County prosecutors will have to determine whether any criminal charges are warranted.

Family members said children often play around the drainage ditch, and they are now urging the landowner to put up a fence or some other barrier to prevent future accidents.

A crude wooden cross was erected next to the ditch Thursday with the inscription "Bam, we love you," referring to one of Zaymon's nicknames.

"I can't imagine (life) without him because I talked to him every day," Locklear said.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • GravyPig Apr 26, 2013

    I'm not here to pass judgement. This is a sad time for this family.

    The article is not really clear, but is sounds like Zaymon got a fishing rod from Marlon Jacobs and went down to the ditch.

    I certainly don't agree with letting a 2 year old wander down to a deep drainage ditch to go fishing. Having grown up on a lake, we never went down to the water by ourselves as kids. You always went with an adult.

    Very sad for the family.

  • Scubagirl Apr 25, 2013

    such a sad sad story. Condolences to his loved ones.

  • sophiemom Apr 25, 2013

    That is really sad. Thinking about the family.

  • Godschild43 Apr 25, 2013

    Lifting the family up in prayer..

  • proudmuslimexchristian Apr 25, 2013

    SO quickly a lamb may be lost.

  • HANS FOR PRESIDENT!!!!! JK Apr 25, 2013

    That's bad. Hopefully not too many (some always will) rush to judgement. I have 5 and 7 year olds and have been around a bunch of people and lost sight of one. Your heart drops to your feet. Can't imagine finding them this way. Anyone who doesn't believe something like this can be accidental is either living in a fantasy land or has never had kids. Thoughts with the family

  • ezLikeSundayMorning Apr 25, 2013

    What a terrible accident...

  • Paul M Apr 25, 2013


  • feistyredhead2001 Apr 25, 2013

    How sad, my prayers are with the family and loved ones.

  • dirkdiggler Apr 25, 2013

    :( Poor little kid. My heart breaks for the family. Hoping the all-knowing WRAL lynch mob doesn't come on here talking the same smack they've been talking in the Knightdale article. More proof that bad things can happen regardless of intent. Rest in peace, little soul. :(