Usher Raymond and Tameka Foster’s Son Injured in Pool Accident

Stevie Wonder and Usher perform in front of the Lincoln Memorial

I just read something I felt compelled to write about. Celebrity stylist Tameka Foster, and ex-husband, superstar Usher Raymond’s, five-year-old son, Usher Raymond V, was rushed to the hospital yesterday after a tragic pool accident.

I held my breath while reading it and I am still shaken up writing about it. TMZ has reported that the adorable boy will be fine, but I cannot. Imagine. What Tameka and Usher went through and how they are feeling right now.

According to reports, the boy was playing in the pool with his aunt when he noticed a toy in the pool’s drain. When he dove down to retrieve it, his arm got stuck in the drain and he couldn’t get back up. Thankfully his aunt was right there and immediately dove down to help him, but she was unable to free him. A maid then came out to help but was also unsuccessful. Finally, some contract workers who were at the house at the time heard the aunt and maid screaming for help and were able to rescue little Usher and administer CPR.

Oh. My. God. That had to be the most terrifying few minutes for the aunt and all involved, and especially for that poor little boy. Even worse, Tameka Foster lost her eldest son, Kile, last summer when he was struck and killed by a jet ski. My heart breaks for that poor woman. I can’t imagine the pain of losing a child and the terror she must have felt upon hearing another one of her children was in an accident. Thank goodness he will be okay.

I vaguely recall hearing other stories of accidents with pool drains and after reading this one, I had to look into it. Drain entrapments occur when body parts (or objects such as articles of clothing or jewelry attached to someone) are held to the drain by the force of the drain’s suction. Apparently these types of incidents don’t happen often, but when they do, they can be devastating. Take the horrifying story of a girl who was disemboweled by a faulty drain at her local pool and eventually died from ramifications of that injury. Another drain accident that took the life of former Secretary of State James A. Baker III’s granddaughter brought about the passage of the Pool & Spa Safety Act, which “requires anti-entrapment drain covers and other safety devices at public pools and spas.”

These might be considered “freak” accidents, but the fact that I have heard more than one story like this makes me feel it is imperative to share safety tips about this. Awarenss is the key to preventing tragedies like these. Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Be aware of where pool drains are and know that flat drains (often found in public kiddie pools) and pools with single main drain systems pose the most risk of entrapment
  • If you own a pool, it’s extremely important to make sure all drains are properly covered and are inspected regularly
  • If you take your kids to a public pool or even a friend or family member’s pool (or spa), know where the drains (and pipes and filters, etc.) are; make your kids aware that these things can sometimes be dangerous, to avoid them if they can, and to let an adult know if something looks off or they lose something inside them
  • Avoid swimming with jewelry whenever you can and remember that long hair can get caught in the suction as well
  • Don’t be shy to ask about regular drain inspections at your local pool and let them know it’s a concern
  • When in doubt, don’t swim!