The family of a local 4-year-old boy who died after falling from an icy pond in Isabella County last year is hoping to prevent the tragedy from happening again.
The family is donating this new tool with money raised to a GoFundMe.
John Kenny remembers his son, Spencer Kenny.
John Kelly said, “He was just a wonderful guy. Full of energy, laughing, joking, running, all the energy. He just had a heart of gold.” “Today is my son’s birthday. We lost him on December 19 last year, just before Christmas.”
Spencer fell from the ice of a pond in Isabella County. Several employees, including the Sheriff’s dive team and the Shepherd Fire Department, responded, but by the time they found him, he could not be revived.
“It’s something that Johnny has been talking about since the day we lost Spencer, that he wanted to do something for the dive team, to make sure they had the equipment and resources they needed. So that instead of recovery it was really a rescue,” said Spencer’s great-aunt Machel Mitchell.
Mitchell organized a fundraising event to gift the “Aqua Eye” to the dive team. It uses sonar technology to scan underwater and costs over $5,000 which is paid for by the community.
“It really changed our family for the rest of our lives. If we can save someone from getting through it, it’s worth every penny,” Mitchell said.
Captain Kevin Salisbury is a close friend of Kenny and was the first to react to the pond in which Spencer died. He believes this piece of technology could have changed the outcome that day.
“Where Spencer was found was not far from where we were. But it was a foggy pond, which made it difficult. Being able to detect anything else with sonar, he could have found it very quickly ,” said Salisbury.
In what should be a joyous occasion, the Spencer’s family honors his memory by providing the hope that the next rescue, if it must, will lead to a better outcome.
John Kenny said, “The pain of losing your child is terrifying. The fact that you may be able to help another family is priceless.”