Louis Lowenthal drowned under sketchy circumstances. The only details the press has been able to ascertain are statements made by the paramedics who arrived at the scene:
"...There are "... few details surrounding the Sunday incident, but emergency responders say Lowenthal was found at the bottom of the pool. ..."
"...The club said that on Sunday, someone saw Lowenthal go into the pool. That witness left the pool area but when they returned, found Lowenthal at the bottom of the pool. A lifeguard pulled him out and performed CPR, but was unable to revive him. ..."
[CBS Baltimore: Link]
How long does it take for somebody to drown? I suspect each individual is different but presuming that Louis somehow fell into an immediate unconscious state for whatever reason such as a hypoxic set or otherwise, lifeguards had a two-to-four-minute window to prevent irreversible brain damage and it appears that they were too late.
From Prevent Injury.Org
"... Drowning usually occurs quickly and silently. Childhood drownings and near-drownings can happen in a matter of seconds and typically occur when a child is left unattended or during a brief lapse in supervision. Two minutes following submersion, a child will lose consciousness. Irreversible brain damage occurs after four to six minutes and determines the immediate and long-term survival of a child. The majority of children who survive (92 percent) are discovered within two minutes following submersion, and most children who die (86 percent) are found after 10 minutes. Nearly all who require cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) die or are left with severe brain injury.
How long was Louis underwater for? To no fault of their own, CBS Baltimore, Swimming World or any other press outlet does know how long Louis was stranded because that is how thorough the clamp down of information has been within Meadowbrook and NBAC?
Somebody knows and I suspect that the parents and kids were told to "shut-up" or to "...keep this between you and me." Typical swimming "poolitics" as I call it or perhaps a more urban description might be more fitting: "snitches get stitches," or "witnesses get ostracized."
Kids, don't shut up about this tragedy. Talk to the authorities and talk to your parents. Make swimming safer by speaking out. Parents should consider the positive effects or moral transparency as well.
I would like to thank a hostile reader who confirmed that Bob Bowman does own the Meadowbrook Aquatics and Fitness Center or the pool that Louis Lowenthal drowned. Here is the link that he/she sent to me for the Meadowbrook website confirming that CEO, Bob Bowman, is the Meadowbrook owner.
[Meadowbrook Website confirmation: Link]
Bob Bowman is also the CEO of the North Baltimore Aquatics Club (NBAC), Hence, not only was it his club but it was Bob Bowman's pool too. Why no statement from Bob Bowman?
On Tuesday, Louis was sent off with what the Baltimore Sun described as a beautiful acknowledgement on who he was and what he accomplished. The boy was so capable and this is such a terrible loss. I suspect that there was a lousy process in place for this to have happend. Coaches, pool owners, and swimmers throughout the swim community need to hear what went wrong so as to prevent this sort of senseless tragedy.
From The Baltimore Sun:
"... Louis' NBAC coaches, Tom Himes and Solomon Sniad, recalled a young swimmer who worked to get better and was always the last one out of the pool — though he just as often could be seen trying to find out how many spins he could do in the water without touching the pool floor.
Kennedy said Louis was always willing to help out with Stoneleigh's young swimmers, who would flock to his lane when he was able to stay for their practice.
He told of a 5-year-old swimmer who asked one day how Louis got so fast; the young swimmer wanted to be like him.
Kennedy told the boy that Louis was fast because Louis was part fish and had fins.
To hear the boy's response — on an afternoon when Kennedy urged a thousand people to take Louis' compassion and happiness with them into the world —solidified why so many felt the need to celebrate a 14-year-old's life. ..."
So, Mr. Bowman, what happened? You are the captain, it is was your ship and your ocean too? What is your statement? What went wrong so it can be prevented at other clubs and facilities as well?