Two Pike County families, in mourning today after two kids die after falling through ice at a pond near a home. Indiana DNR identified the two 12-year-olds who died as Brice Phillips and Paige Bailey.
Officials say they first learned of the two falling through the ice around 5:15 Thursday night when it happened at a pond just off of County Road 725 South.”
“We’ve lost a great person. he was a great kid,” says Theresa O’Neill, who is Brice Phillips’s grandmother. she says her family lost two kids who loved to play.
“Paige played basketball and cheerleading with my youngest granddaughter,” she says. “They were best of friends. she was a good kid. you couldn’t ask for a better child.”
The two fell through ice DNR officials say was an inch to an inch and a half thick. Brice’s mother tried to get them out before first responders arrived. Emergency divers pulled the two out, but they passed away at a Jasper hospital. O’Neill hopes what happened to them doesn’t happen to another family again.
“She had a touch of hypothermia sitting in,” says O’Neill, describing the injuries Brice’s mother had when trying to help her son. “She has a broken finger. she has a knot on her head where she tried to use her head to break the ice to save her children. she did everything and anything to save these children.”
O’Neill says she’ll remember Brice and Paige as full of life and hopes others remember them as well. Autopsies on the two are scheduled for Saturday morning.
Pike County Schools Superintendent Suzanne Blake left statements following the deaths of 2 students who died after falling through ice in a pond:
Two of our students were involved in a drowning accident yesterday afternoon. They were rescued and taken to the hospital. Last night, we received word that they did not survive. The students were enrolled at Winslow Elementary and Pike Central Middle School.
Additional counselors are at the schools to provide support and assistance for our staff and students. We extend our prayers to the families and friends of the students. We realize the school is an extended family for them and our hearts also ache for their classmates and all who knew them. Please keep them in your prayers at this difficult time.
Paige Bailey, attended 5th grade at Winslow Elementary. Paige is known for her bright smile and positive outlook on life. She was always kind to others and was loved by everyone at the school.
Brice Phillips, attended 6th grade at Pike Central Middle School. Brice is a known as a quiet and courteous young man. He seldom missed school, and always greeted teachers with a smile and a ‘good morning’ and waved as he left each afternoon.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources says a 12-year-old Paige Bailey and a 12-year-old BrIce Phillips have died after falling through the ice in Pike County.
Conservation officers were able to rescue both victims within 30 minutes, but both died at the Memorial Hospital in Jasper.
We’re told the accident happened at a pond in southern Pike County. The call came in around 5:15 p.m. Thursday.
The Indiana DNR reports no foul play is suspected and autopsies are scheduled for Saturday. The DNR says updated information is expected Friday morning.
The names of the children have not been released. Officers are still investigating.