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updated: 8/3/2013 11:16 PM

Naperville boy, 6, drowns in retention pond

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  • Amer Kahn

    Amer Kahn
    Courtesy of ABC 7


A 6-year-old boy was found floating face down Saturday morning in a retention pond on Naperville's southwest side and later pronounced dead at Edward Hospital, fire officials said.

A person out walking noticed the boy, Amer Kahn, in a pond by the Glenmuir Luxury Rental Homes complex near 95th Street and Cedar Glade Drive at 11:30 a.m. and called 911. The passer-by removed Amer and began CPR until Naperville police responded to the scene.

"The police did an excellent job of taking over CPR and giving this young man the best chance for survival," said Mark Thurow, EMS chief for the Naperville Fire Department. "Unfortunately, I think this is just one of those very sad tragedies that do occur -- a child got into the pond and for whatever reason wasn't able to get out."

Amer had been playing outside of his home when his family may have lost track of him, Thurow said.

The family lives nearby on the 2900 block of Kilburne Lane, according to the DuPage County coroner's office.

Amer was transported to Edward Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 12:28 p.m.

Amer was the baby of three boys, said his father Asghar Mohammed, who said Amer was a quiet, happy child who loved to play.

"He liked to play in water," Mohammed told ABC 7. "He was a happy little boy. He just wanted to run around."

The pond, which does not have a fence around it, is a T-shaped, permanently wet retention pond with an aerator sprinkler fountain. It ranges from 2 to 10 feet deep and is about 500 feet long and 75 feet wide, Thurow said.

The longest part of the pond runs parallel to 95th Street across from Neuqua Valley High School, while the shorter side backs up to multifamily housing, he said.

Neighbor Erica Henderson said sirens alerted her to a problem in the area. The windows of her apartment look out onto the pond where Amer drowned.

She said children do not typically play near the pond, which sits between two different townhome-style apartment complexes. With playgrounds and a pool with a clubhouse nearby, the pond isn't really a hangout for neighborhood kids, she said.

"It's horrible news," said Henderson, who has two children and has lived in the neighborhood for more than six years. "Some people have lived here for more than 13 years, and they've never had an incident like this."

Fire officials and dive teams continued to search the pond Saturday afternoon to make sure no other children were present.

"Given the age of the child, it's more common than not that the child of that age would be with someone," Thurow said. "To be safe, the team searched the entire pond."

That search wrapped up at about 1:30 p.m. without finding anyone else.

Fences aren't required for retention ponds in Naperville, Thurow said. There haven't been any other children who have drowned in Naperville retention ponds in recent years, he said.

Members of the Naperville fire, police and EMS were assisted by the Aurora Fire Department Dive Team, while Lisle Woodridge Fire Protection District provided station coverage.

Mohammed said his son was a very special child.

"He did not learn how to talk yet," he said. "He was just gorgeous. He was my son."

An autopsy is scheduled for today.

ABC 7 contributed to this report.

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