Did you ever feel like you were in the right place at the right time?
That's exactly how Summit County sheriff's deputies Bill McKinney and Mark McElroy felt during a recent work assignment in Phoenix. They were there to transport a fugitive prisoner back to Ohio, but wound up completing an unexpected and more important task.
McKinney says that he and McElroy were having dinner against a window that overlooked their hotel swimming pool when a young boy somehow ended up at the bottom of it. The off-duty deputies didn't see it happen, but quickly ran to help as someone else was pulling the 3-year old out of the water.
"He was gray with purple lips and his head was gashed wide open," said McKinney. "I wiped the blood off his head and he was dead."
No pulse, no blood being pumped out of the wound.
McElroy started chest compressions and McKinney began mouth-to-mouth, eventually prompting signs of life as paramedics were arriving.
"After it was all done, I put me head in my hands and I just kind of lost it," said McKinney, the father of a 6-year old. "Every time I blew into this kid's mouth, I saw my little girl's face."
The boy, known to the deputy of 19 years as "T.J.," is apparently fine. He was even seen playing in the pool area a couple of days later.
"We were sent here for a reason and it wasn't to pick this prisoner up. I believe it was for T.J," said McKinney.
McKinney says they just stepped in, saved the boy's life and went about their day, mentioning to AkronNewsNow that "nobody really knew who we were." He's right. At least one media report in Phoenix referred to the life savers as a couple of hotel employees.