Counselors were on hand at a Gaithersburg elementary school Tuesday after a 10-year-old student died after falling into an icy pond.
DeAngelo McMullen, his 11-year-old brother and a 10-year-old friend were playing on a drainage pond in the area of Diamondback Drive and Reprise Drive just after 4 p.m. Monday when they became stuck on and in the pond. The pond had previously iced over during last week's frigid temperatures.
The two survivors were quickly rescued and taken from the scene wrapped in blankets. But McMullen of Rockville had fallen through the ice. The Montgomery County Dive Team searched the murky, muddy water for 25 minutes before they found him.
McMullen, a 4th grader at Rosemont Elementary School, was transported to a local hospital in critical condition, but he did not survive.
His family released the following statement Tuesday:
“We would like to thank all of our family, friends, and the community for their support during this difficult time. Please respect our privacy while our family grieves the loss of our very special child.”
The other boys were also taken to an area hospital, where they were treated and released.
Neighbors say the three boys would often play on the pond when it was frozen over. But just last week, county officials sent out a press release warning residents of the then-impending arctic blast and the dangers of trying to go out on the ice.
"There is no ice in this region that is stable enough to be on," Assistant Fire Chief Scott Graham said.
Storm Team4 Chief Meteorologist Doug Kammerer said the temperature of the water was likely approximately 40 degrees.