Cape Town - A boy miraculously came back to life - after being declared dead for half an hour.
The family of little Naasiek Whiting, eight, had given up all hope after he apparently drowned during a family day out at Boulders beach.
But despite having no pulse, a hero doctor somehow managed to revive him after spending more than 30 minutes battling to save his life.
The drama unfolded as Naasiek and his family, who are from Bridgetown, were enjoying a day out at the popular spot last Sunday.
Naasiek got separated from his parents after he went to have a closer look at the penguins on the beach.
When they saw him next, a doctor was standing over his lifeless body desperately trying to bring him back to life.
“I told my husband ‘look there, someone has drowned’ - not knowing it was my own child,” Naasiek’s mother Kashiefa , 30, said.
Doctor Mohammed Slamie, 42, was also enjoying a family day out at the beach when he noticed a child’s body floating in a shallow water.
“I was enjoying the day at the beach with my two children and taking pictures of them,” Dr Slamie said.
“My daughter ran in another direction and I ran after her - that’s when I saw the penguins and I snapped pictures of them.
“In the same breath I saw a body floating in the water, right behind the penguins.”
The quick-thinking doctor immediately kicked off his sandals and waded into the icy-cold water to drag Naasiek’s body out.
Dr Slamie says Naasiek was “already dead in the water”.
He added: “As I held his body in my arms, I could already feel he was dead. He was foaming at the mouth and I could not feel a pulse.”
Dr Slamie immediately administered CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) and battled for more than 30 minutes to bring Naasiek back to life.
“After doing CPR for almost 30 minutes, Alhamdulillah [Praise be to God], he coughed up water and there was a heart beat again, albeit very slow.”
But just before paramedics arrived at the scene, Naasiek slipped into a coma. The boy’s distraught mother thought there was no way back for her son.
“It was the biggest shock of my life - I never imagined it would happen to my own child,” Kashiefa said.
Naasiek was rushed to the Red Cross Children’s Hospital.
He woke from his coma the next day and was discharged from hospital on Friday.
Kashiefa says her little boy would be dead if it were not for the intervention of Dr Slamie. “That man saved my son,” she said.
“He is a hero and I want to thank him and everyone else for their support.”
Despite being medically dead for half an hour, Naasiek has not suffered any long-term damage.
“Naasiek has recovered fully and is doing very well now - he doesn’t even have a single bruise or effect from the accident,” Kashiefa added.