The toddler who nearly drowned Friday morning in the swimming pool of a Modesto home continues to fight for his life, according to an update on the gofundme.com page "Hope for Hunter."
Hunter Eckles, who first responders said is 2 years old, was breathing on his own at Children's Hospital Oakland, said the latest update, posted Sunday. A ventilator remained in place, though, because of liquid in and around his lungs.
The update, attributed to Hunter's dad, Justin, said, "Hunter is in the biggest battle of his life right now due to brain swelling. Swelling peaks between 24 and 72 hours from an injury such as this. The more his brain swells, the more brain cells become damaged and die. They're also seeing very irrational brain waves. His brain is not dead, but having almost endless misfires. We won't know much more until swelling subsides."
Friday's 911 call at about 10:40 a.m. dispatched emergency crews to the 400 block of Redford Lane in north Modesto. Hunter had been removed from a pool after having been underwater about five minutes, according to the Modesto Fire Department. Firefighters first on scene began CPR, which continued in an ambulance en route to Doctors Medical Center.
The pool is fenced, said Modesto Police Department spokeswoman Sharon Bear, but apparently the gate was ajar. Hunter's family members were working in the yard when they noticed he wasn't in sight, she said.
The gofundme.com post says Hunter's dad and mom, Lisa, as well as his big sister, are with him. "It is very costly for them to stay together at this time," said the fundraising page, which as of Monday morning was at $6,070 of its $25,000 goal. "There are no accommodations available for the three of them to stay at or near the hospital."
Justin Eckles' post said Hunter's pupils have begun reacting to light, "so some signs of improvement are present, but unfavorable ones are present too. We need nothing short of a miracle."