Miramar man uses CPR, saves granddaughter from drowning

1-year-old fell in family's swimming pool

MIRAMAR, Fla. – Justin Rivera and his family said a simple CPR course saved Aalyiah's life Wednesday after the 1-year-old made her way outside and fell into the family's swimming pool in Miramar.

The girl's grandfather came home about 6 p.m. and asked his son where the baby was. After searching the residence, they found her in the pool.

"As I walked outside the baby was just floating," said Justin Rivera, the girl's great uncle. "She was blue in the water. When he picked her up out the water, he started performing CPR on her." 

Relatives said the girl lives at the home off Indigo Street with her mother and other family members. 

Justin Rivera said he had gone to his bedroom when his dog likely pushed an unlocked sliding door open. He said the 1-year-old must have wandered outside. 

The girl's grandfather said he had just taken a CPR refresher course for work and immediately started chest compressions.

"I took a refresher course not too long ago and that did help tremendously," grandfather Ray Rivera said.

By the time paramedics arrived, Aaliyah had spit up water and started breathing.

While the incident remains under investigation, relatives hope their scare will serve as a lesson to others. In the last week alone, five drowning incidents were reported in Broward County. All but one of those incidents involved children. 

Justin Rivera said this all happened within a matter of minutes and encourages anyone who deals with children to learn CPR.

Family members told Local 10 News on Thursday that Aaliyah is doing well and is expected to go home sometime in the afternoon or evening.

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