ENID, Okla. - Louis Lopez said he’d been trying for months to get all 14 of his grandchildren to come over for a camp out in the backyard.
They finally found a date that worked for everyone, and all of the cousins came over on Saturday, Oct. 1.
“Had them all over. We had a nice campfire, s’mores, marshmallows, hot dogs, the whole camping thing just in the backyard,” Louis said.
But, that fun night ended in tragedy.
The next morning, 2-year-old Zaiden Lopez was in the backyard with some of his older cousins when he fell into the fire pit.
By that time, it was just ashes, but it was still hot enough to severely injure the little boy.
His grandfather was inside the house cooking breakfast when he heard the screams.
“He was screaming and his arm, bottom of his forearm was burnt real bad and kind of skin hanging off,” Louis said.
Louis rushed little Zaiden to the hospital in Enid, who was then flown by a helicopter to the Integris Baptist Medical Center in Oklahoma City.
Currently, he is on a ventilator with second- and third-degree burns on his arms and legs.
“It’s really tough. I feel very responsible. I manned the fire from the time it started until the end and, you know, I drew my attention away from it to take care of breakfast. And, I feel I’ve failed,” Louis said.
Zaiden’s grandfather and mother though said the situation might have been even worse if it weren’t for Zaiden’s 13-year-old cousin, Mykell Woolsey.
He’s the one who got in the fire pit to get Zaiden out.
“We’re just really glad that Mykell was there and that he had the wits about him to get him out,” Louis said.
“He’s the real hero,” said Latricia Page, Zaiden’s mom.
“He’s the real hero here. We definitely feel he’s our hero,” Louis said.
“I was glad I was there,” Woolsey said.
Woolsey said Zaiden was standing by the tent but, when he looked back, he was in the fire pit.
“I ran off the trampoline and went and got him,” Woolsey said.
Zaiden’s family is now doing the only thing they can do: praying the little boy will make it through the horrible accident.
“Praying and hoping for the best, trying not to think about the worst,” Page said.
Zaiden is currently on a ventilator in the pediatric intensive care unit.
The family said doctors are trying to control his infections before turning their attention to his burns.