AKRON, Ohio — A 2-year-old Akron toddler drowned over the weekend while staying with his family in a cottage in southern Ohio.
Andrew Howell, who has autism, wandered away from his family and was found in the Muskingum River Saturday evening, according to Laurie Cramer, Director of the Autism Society of Greater Akron.
The family administered CPR on Andrew before the fire department arrived on the scene. He was pronounced dead at Genesis Good Samaritan Medical in Zanesville.
Cramer, who has been asked to speak on the family’s behalf, told Fox 8 News the Autism Society is “supporting the Howell family during this time in any way that we can.”
“Given that one of the critical traits of autism is language delays, our children just don’t turn to us and say ‘I want to go look at the river.” said Cramer. “The number one killer of children and adults with autism is drowning….our population is attracted to water.”
Craimer said the Autism Society works to alert first responders when a child with autism is missing, and advises them to check waterways first.