8-year-old saved by stranger after he nearly drowned in High Rock Lake

North Carolina

DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) — A Winston-Salem family is searching for the stranger who saved their son after he nearly drowned in High Rock Lake on Sunday afternoon.

Ivan Gomez disappeared underwater for almost a minute after suffering a seizure in the Buddle Creek swim area.

When the 8-year-old’s father pulled his lifeless body out of the water a stranger stepped in to perform CPR.

“It’s scary, it’s very scary. You never know when something like that’s going to happen, and you don’t think it could be your child,” Christina Gallardo said.

Gallardo’s son lives with a severe form of epilepsy. He was on a seven-day stretch of no seizures when Sunday’s attack paralyzed him in the water.

“I feel very lucky! I’m just glad to have my son, people don’t understand how dangerous it is. How important it is to know how to handle seizures, especially around water, and what to do when a person is having a seizure,” Gallardo said.

Whether you chalk it up to fate or good timing, a life was saved.

“I want to find this person and thank him because if it wasn’t for him my son wouldn’t be here today,” Gallardo said.

The family is hoping someone remembers the man with a goatee in a white tank top and blue swim trunks, so they can personally thank him for giving Gomez a second chance.

Gomez spent the night in the hospital, but he’s already feeling better.

He still has a small amount of water in his lungs, but the doctors say it will absorb on its own.

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