SOUTH PLAINFIELD — A toddler found unconscious in a swimming pool Tuesday evening has passed away.

Middlesex County Prosecutor Yvonne Ciccione said police were called to a South Plainfield home Tuesday for a 2-year-old who was not breathing.

He was taken to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune Township and remained in critical condition. The boy was pronounced dead on Friday.

Ciccone did not disclose the child's identity or other information about the incident.

Friend Netzaly Perez created a GoFundMe page to help with the family's unexpected funeral and medical expenses. The page identifies the boy's mother as Andrea Roman and her son as Kheitan.

Staying safe around water

The Red Cross New Jersey said drowning is the leading cause of accidental death among children age 1-4. Here are some tips on avoiding tragedy with young children around water.

  • Provide close and constant attention to children you are supervising, even when a lifeguard is present, no matter how well the child can swim or how shallow the water.
  • Avoid distractions including cell phones.
  • Never leave a young child unattended near water and do not trust a child’s life to another child; teach children to always ask permission to go near water.
  • Designate a “water watcher” whenever in a group setting.
  • Have young children or inexperienced swimmers wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets around water, but do not rely on life jackets alone
  • Many children who drown in home pools did so during non-swim times – when they weren’t expected to be in the water, including as the swimming activity was coming to an end and everyone was thought to be out of the water
  • If a child is missing, check the water first. Seconds count in preventing death or disability

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