Six-year-old rescues toddler brother from pool drowning

At just six years old, Pinjarra boy and year 1 student at Austin Cove Baptist College Finnley Regler has already proven himself to be a life-saver, after rescuing his three-year-old brother Issy from drowning in their grandparents’ swimming pool.

Finnley’s two older brothers had left the pool area, while Finnley and Issy remained.

“The little guy, and he’s only three, and he can’t swim, he fell over backwards and ended up in the pool,” Austin Cove Baptist College principal Keith Newby said.

“Finnley had the presence of mind to shout out, ‘Mum, Issy’s in the water’ at the top of his voice and then jump in... and was able to push him up out of the water… and hold him up while treading water, until his mother came and pulled him out.”

St John’s ambulance was called and the boys’ mother Angela Regler gave some basic first aid.

“I just wanted to jump in and save him,” Finnley said.

“Mum jumped in as well and then she got Issy out of the pool.”

Ms Regler said the magnitude of what Finnley had done seemed to go over his head. 

“I knew the boys could swim, and I knew they were confident in the water, but I had no idea that Finnley had any other understanding of what to do in an emergency,” she said.

“I was very surprised, but also incredibly proud of him and so thankful that he has had swimming lessons and we’ve always had them around water, and tried to get them to be confident around water.”

Finnley was given a courage certificate in school on Wednesday, and was earlier presented with a bravery award by St John’s ambulance, along with a special reward.

“I got a Lego, it was an ambulance one that had a little city and I already made it all,” Finnley said.

When asked how he knew what to do, Finnley said he’d learnt how to hold a person above water at his in-term swimming lessons, as part of school.

“We go down to Pinjarra to the Recreation Centre there… it obviously paid off for him,” Mr Newby said.

“I’ve said to the parents here, obviously the value of the in-term lessons that we have at the school are very important.”

The in-term swimming lessons are offered to all students from pre-primary to year 6, through the education department.