A young child nearly drowned in a hotel swimming pool in Chicago's South Loop Saturday morning, according to fire officials, but was saved thanks in large part to a fast-acting bystander.
The incident occurred around 9 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place hotel, located in the 2200 block of S. King Dr.
A hotel employee discovered the child, a 5-year-old boy, at the bottom of the pool and pulled him out, authorities said.
It was not immediately clear how long he had been under water, but the staff member performed CPR until paramedics arrived - an action that first responders said very well may have saved the boy's life.
"The bystander stepped up, got him out of the water, performed CPR immediately and that definitely made the outcome much better for the child," CFD Lt. Kevin Howard said at a news conference on the rescue.
Paramedics Roscoe Reynolds and Janice Orozco were the first to arrive on the scene, and said the boy became responsive.
"The child was lethargic but crying," Reynolds said.
"He was crying, he seemed to be recognizing his mom when she was talking to him also, so that obviously was a good sign for us," Orozco added.
The child was taken in critical condition to Lurie Children's Hospital, according to fire officials, but was expected to survive.
The incident prompted first responders to stress the importance of knowing what to do in an emergency situation.
"Learning CPR and AED’s is the most important things that we could do right now," said CFD Deputy District Chief Jeffrey Horan.