Granger Smith, Wife Amber Film ‘Today’ Segment About Child Drowning Prevention
Granger Smith and his wife Amber are continuing their mission of childhood drowning prevention. Sitting down with Today for a segment that has yet to air, the couple open up about their own tragedy while also informing families nationwide about how to take important safety steps, especially as summer approaches.
Child drowning is a painful reality they've lived. The couple's 3-year-old son, River Kelly Smith, died after drowning in the family's pool last June. Since that horrific day, Granger and Amber have made it their journey to share their story in hopes of saving other kids.
"I didn't understand child drowning like I do now," the country singer admits in the video, explaining to fans that drowning is a "multi-layered" tragedy that is silent and can take only a matter of seconds. The behind-the-scenes footage from Today — shot in the family's Texas home — is part of a recent episode of their YouTube series, The Smiths.
Amber has learned the facts — things she may not have realized before losing her son — and is straight-forward about delivering them. Families should have a four-sided, four-foot locking fence around their pool, she says, and a second lock for added safety. Pool alarms, swim survival lessons, wearing life vests and keeping toys out of the pool area are some of the other measures Amber suggests families take to keep kids away from water when they shouldn't be near it.
"We are trying to find research to find all the things we can do to prevent this from happening," she advises. Another tactic they are currently researching is the My Buddy Tag, a system where both a child and their responsible guardian wear digital bracelets that enable the adult to set certain parameters for how far a child can travel away from them. If they go beyond the limit, an alarm will go off.
But Amber ends her testimonial with the most important advice of all: "Just love your kids," she says. "Be present with your kids, spend time with them as much as you can, because as we know, we're never promised tomorrow ... and with as much control as we think we have, we don't."
After River's passing, the Smiths donated his organs and saved the lives of at least two other people. They also started the River Kelly Fund, which raises awareness and generates donations for causes that are important to the family, benefiting children in need and first responder assistance, among many other causes.
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