State Fair accident update: "He's opened his eyes" - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

State Fair accident update: "He's opened his eyes"

Posted: Updated: Nov 4, 2011 08:08 PM CDT
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -

The family of four year old Sheldon "S.J" Lewis has released good news about the little boy's condition. Two days after he was trapped under a ride at the Louisiana State Fair, he remains in critical condition.

Through a family spokesman, the family tells us that he is breathing on his own, with some help from a ventilator, and that he could be off the ventilator as early as Saturday.

Pastor Johnny Cox says S.J. had a successful leg surgery, and that there is more good news: "He's opened his eyes, moved them around. We were excited because we did not....according to medical belief that it would not happen, but God is still good. It was a great feeling. I was in there. I saw it for myself, and it was wonderful."

We caught up with the first two responders on the scene of the accident.

"Someone came and got us from our trailer and told us there was a child trapped under the machine," says Demarcus Peoples. "When we got to the machine, I thought he was under it...not under a car."

"The scene was chaotic when we first got there. The carnival workers were trying to get the child out of the entanglement," adds Capt. Kenneth Davis.

But their attempts were unsuccessful. Capt. Davis and Demarcus Peoples say S.J. Was barely visible.

"Pretty much all his body except for his head and shoulders was under the machine. So all we could do at that point was assist his airway and assist in his breathing," Peoples says.

We spoke with the two just before a training exercise on extrication, similar to what they had to use to get S.J. out Wednesday. Without the "jaws of life" and all the other equipment they used during the rescue, and without training like what they got Friday, it's very possible that S.J. may not have survived.

"There was no way we could do compressions on him," says Davis.

Firefighters go through this kind of special ops training at least three times a year, in hopes that they never have to do anything like what they did Wednesday.

"It was a very stressful situation. One of the most stressful situations I've been on since I've been on the job," says Davis.

We asked what was going through his mind when he got to the scene.

"We are trained to react. You initially see your child down there and then you think about 'Well I gotta do my job and I gotta try to help this child.'"

Davis tells us that his thoughts and prayers are with S.J. and his family. The family has asked for the community's continued prayers as the young boy recovers.

There is now a fund set up to help the Lewis family through this difficult time.

You can donate at any Capitol One branch to the Sheldon Renard Lewis Fund. All the money will go to help pay for medical expenses.

We're expected to learn more about the accident that hurt little S.J. Monday. The state Fire Marshal's office is holding a news conference to release information about their investigation.

That will be Monday morning at 11:00.


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