“There was a damaged part of the fence that we didn’t notice and he managed to sneak through into the neighbor’s yard and fell in their pool,” the grieving father said.
Just a few days after moving into his new dream home in Canning Vale, Isaac Powell, 3, was playing outside on Thursday, January 5, when he slipped through a gap in a fence and into a neighbor's garden. After Isaac's mother, Zahra, realized her kid was missing, his body was found by some kids in the neighbor's pool. She tried to give her child CPR until the ambulance arrived, after which he was taken immediately to Perth Children's Hospital, per 7 News.
The toddler was kept on life support for five days before his parents opted to turn off the machine on Monday. Stephen Powell, Isaac's father, admitted that he is devastated, unable to go back home to the empty house without his son. “It was meant to be our family home, and we have to sell I think, we don’t want to go back,” he said. “He would run off sometimes, he was a cheeky boy - if there was a way to escape a room he would find it pretty quickly. So when she called and said he was missing I wasn’t too worried. It’s cruel — I was out buying a birthday cake.”
The grieving father of a Perth toddler who drowned in a neighbour's backyard pool has issued an impassioned plea.— 9News Melbourne (@9NewsMelb) January 4, 2023
He wants all owners to maintain their fences and learn CPR after three-year-old Isaac Powell was found lifeless in the water. @shubaskrishnan #9News pic.twitter.com/pkc7BKt3Ey
According to the family, Isaac most likely entered the neighboring property through a fence gap where panels were missing. The pool fence gate may have been open or closed at the time. Two days before Christmas, according to Powell, the family moved into the Spyglass Ave. house. However, they were unaware that two fence panels were missing from behind the shed. “There was a damaged part of the fence that we didn’t notice and he managed to sneak through into the neighbor’s yard and fell in their pool,” he said.
“When you get a settlement you pay for a builder’s inspection to find any serious defaults in the house and it wasn’t mentioned. I assume the previous owners would have known it was broken ... they could have passed that information on and we might not be here right now,” the grieving father said.
The family recently moved into the residence, according to the toddler's aunt Ummu Bakri, in order to be closer to a school that provided a program for her other nephew. Bakri stated that her sister Zahra was "happy for the future" and was preparing for a birthday party with family when she discovered her son was missing. “Searching the house and the backyard she couldn’t find him and thought the worst,” Bakri said. “All she could think is maybe he managed to open the side door to the garage and escape on the street.”
Isaac's aunt also shared the link to a GoFundMe set up for raising funds for the family at this difficult time along with a deeply emotional post on Facebook. “Rather than celebrating New Years, my family and I have been at the Perth children's hospital with my sister and her husband having to make the tough decision to take Isaac off life support,” she wrote while emphasizing the importance of pool-fencing, “A tragedy like this was preventable and a small child should be safe in the boundaries of his/her home.”
Cover Image Source: GoFundMe