Chiefs Leonard Pope on Water Safety Mission
Chiefs tight end, Leonard Pope, is used to high-pressure situations, but none got the blood pumping more than one moment in June 2011. That’s when Pope saved a six-year-old boy from drowning in a pool, and since then, he’s been on a mission to educate people about being safe near water.
Leonard Pope is known for his work on the field at Arrowhead. Since June, he’s had another claim to fame- life saver.
“Just hearing, you know, Bryce’s mom with her motherly cry, and she was just screaming for her baby and, you know, lucky I was there,” Pope said recalling the frightening day in Georgia.
Stephanie Snyder, the Aquatics Director at the Cleaver Family YMCA, said water stories don’t always have to be dramatic.
“We want to make sure that everyone knows there are ways to prevent these accidental drownings,” Snyder said.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, drowning is the second leading cause of death in children between the ages of one and fourteen. That’s why the YMCA invited Leonard Pope to speak, to bring more attention to the importance of water safety. It worked. Young Chiefs fans and their parents turned up to see a favorite football player and to hear his message.
“I’m thankful, you know, she’s thankful and we all thankful that it was a good story,” Pope says.
Pope said he started swimming when he was about nine years old. He said his mother insisted he learn because he likes to fish and be around lakes.