A football coach in Louisville, Kentucky is being called a hero after he jumped into a hole to save a small child on Thursday evening. A 2-year-old girl fell into a 14-foot hole at Russell Lee Park in Louisville while playing, and after hearing the commotion, youth football coach Terrance Washington jumped into action.
“The deafening sounds of that child screaming regardless of what’s in the way puts you in a position just to react,” Washington said. Washington was leading a football practice when he heard the screams and saw a group of people forming. After Washington dashed over to the group and saw that a small child had fallen into a well hole, the coach went down into the hole to try to help toddler Myahana Moore.
Myahana’s cousin, Michelle Powell, described the family as being frantic. “We were scared, we were screaming, we couldn’t get it together,” Powell said. Fortunately for them, Washington didn’t hesitate to risk his life to help the child. “As a parent, you don’t want to hear that scream and I immediately needed to get down to her,” Washington explained.
Other coaches helped lower Washington down into the hole where he remained with the child until the two were rescued. Washington lowered himself a little bit at a time to reach the crying child. “You pray on the way down and it’s in God’s hands. My job was to get to that child. 12 years in the military, I think instinct kicked in. No man left behind,” Washington said. After Washington reached Myahana, he was able to keep her calm until a rescue crew arrived. “She wasn’t moving, just screaming and then she put her arms around me. I knew in that moment everything was going to be okay,” he said.
The Louisville football coach and toddler were down in the hole for about an hour and 15 minutes before being pulled to safety. Both Washington and the Myahana were checked out at the hospital and are fine.
While the incident had a happy ending, could it have been prevented? Russell Lee Park, which was closed following the incident, reportedly has multiple holes. Football coach Adrean Harris said that they were aware of the holes in the area where they practice and that they had asked the city to fill them in the past.
“We cover ’em up every day through practice,” Harris said. “I know it has been here since last year and we’ve been asking for them to cover it up, and we haven’t gotten no response yet.” Marty Storch of the Metro Parks Department said they haven’t found a record of such a report, but are very concerned with public safety, “The first thing we’re looking at is public safety, and that’s why we turned the lights on last night. It’s why we had the police stay here, that’s why we put the caution tape up,” Storch said.