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Rocky Mount mother seeks answers about 9-year-old son's coma

Posted August 19, 2014

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— A Rocky Mount mother wants answers about what happened to her 9-year-old son, who was found unconscious at the bottom of a swimming pool during a summer camp trip last week.

Jaekwon Williams is in a coma at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville, where he was taken following the Aug. 11 incident at Lions Water Adventure in Kinston. The boy was part of the city's Williford Summer Day Camp, and the group had taken a day trip to the water park.

Jaekwon was found uat the deep end of the pool. Emergency workers were able to resuscitate him, but he did not regain consciousness, said Tom Taft, an attorney for the boy’s mother, Jasmine Williams.

“It’s not clear as to whether he will ever recover from that coma,” Taft said during a news conference Tuesday to draw attention to the case. “Only time and prayers will tell.”

Taft said he has filed Freedom of Information Act requests and talked with authorities, but no answers are forthcoming.

“We don’t know how this child – who’s never swam in his life – how he ended up in water over his head and how this occurred,” Taft said.

Williams, who has five children, said she wants to know what happened and who was supposed to be watching her child.

“When I left him, he was playing and talking,” she said, breaking down in tears. “(Now) that’s not my child that I left them with to take care of.”

Bill Johnson, a spokesman with the Kinston Department of Public Safety, called the incident a "tragic accident" and said in a statement that his department is conducting an investigation and reviewing all safety policies. He said the city is working with the family to provide information.

Taft acknowledged that the process may take some time.

Meanwhile, Williams agonizes over her child.

“I haven’t slept much,” she said. “It’s hard for me. I (don’t) want to leave his side because I don’t want anything changing when I’m not there.”


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  • anon022 Aug 20, 2014

    I feel so much for this family. I can't imagine leaving my child in the trusted hands of someone else and something this tragic happen. But as a mother, I would want answers too. There should have been enough adults to supervise all of the children so why/how did this happen?

    Prayers for this family.

  • Lorna Schuler Aug 20, 2014
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    My heart goes out to Jasmine. Prayers to Jaekwon and his family for a full recovery.

  • luvstoQ Aug 20, 2014

    I'm so sorry for the heartbreak that this poor mother is going through. I can so see and feel her pain and hope her little boy will recover.

  • Beth Miller Aug 20, 2014
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    This just horrible. :( My thoughts and many many prayers go out to this young man and his family. I hope and pray he is able to pull through!

  • lisa4 Aug 20, 2014

    Praying for Jaekwon and his family.

  • lavenderdejectedmoon Aug 20, 2014

    I can't even imagine the pain this family feels.

  • jwsawyer Aug 20, 2014

    They have classes in Florida to teach 6 month old babies how to float in the water. I can't image any parent not teaching their child how to swim at a very early age.

  • sweetydmh Aug 20, 2014

    My heart goes out to this family. Will be praying for all of you.

  • Forthe Newssite Aug 20, 2014
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    I'm guessing many find it more important/necessary to FEED their family. This is a horrible turn of events for this mother and her family. I can't imagine her pain.

  • Kimberly Daniel Aug 20, 2014
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    Even those who know how to swim can drown. They could hit their head or pass out from heat stroke/dehydration and land in the water. Our pool had an issue with kids using a grate for their game, and a child's fingers got stuck, and it took them a few moments to free themselves. Wouldn't take long at all in a situation like that for a child to lose consciousness. Knowing how to swim helps, but there are still many things that could go wrong.