Posted: Jan 14, 2015 12:30 PM PST
Updated: Jan 23, 2015 3:30 PM PST
The boy was underwater for nearly 40 minutes before rescuers pulled him from the icy water, located off of South Meadows Parkway. The boy’s friend tried to help him, but also fell in the water. A passerby pulled the 12-year-old boy out, but they were unable to reach the first boy. The ice at the small south Reno pond was less than two inches thick.
Saturday’s funeral starts at 3:30 p.m. at South Reno Baptist Church at 6780 McCarran Blvd. in Reno.
Police have yet to officially release the boy’s name, although the church and family members have identified the boy as Austin Pendergrass.
STATEMENT FROM THE PENDERGRASS FAMILY
“We made this funeral service public because this was a horrible result of respecting ice and nature. The community, along with us, has been devastated from the loss of our sweet teenager. As parents, we really would like to send this message out to other parents of children about the dangers of ice and the outcome. We do not want any other parents to go through what we are going through in this very hard and tragic time.”
“Hey kids, please listen to your parents. Have fun as kids but always remember: Safety First at all times. Please make good choices in your free time and please respect all walls in nature including any frozen ponds and any bodies of water. ‘Let’s help protect everyone’s children.’”
– The Pendergrass Family
Flowers and cards of condolences can be sent the South Reno Baptist Church, 6780 South McCarran Boulevard, Reno, NV 89509.
Donations to the family can be sent to Diamond Creek Apartments,
ATTN: Pendergrass Family, 1205 S. Meadows parkway, Reno, NV 89521.
Also, a “Move Your Mountain” fundraising site for the family has been established at
The Reno Fire Department offers the following facts and tips regarding ice safety:
• If you witness someone fall through the ice, call 9-1-1. Instead of putting yourself in danger by trying to reach the victim, assist them from the shore by reassuring them help is on the way and extend objects like a rope, branch, or ladder to them if it’s safe to do so.
• If a person falls in the water, they have about one minute to control their breathing to stand a chance of survival. They will have less than 10 minutes of purposeful muscle movement which includes any chance of them grasping a thrown or extended object to assist with rescue.
• The victim in the water will lose body heat at a rate 25 to 32 times faster than in air. Unconsciousness from hypothermia may occur in as little as seven minutes. This may occur faster in smaller-framed individuals such as children.
• Recognize that ice will never be completely safe. Conditions and unseen or unknown factors can render seemingly safe ice suddenly dangerous.
• Ice is generally thinner where there is moving water, such as inlets and outlets, bridge abutments, islands, and objects that protrude through the ice.