The identities of the two teenage boys who died in a drowning accident in Pella have been confirmed. 14-year-old Gael Chrispin and 15-year-old Nehmson Sanon died Wednesday night after they were found at the bottom of the pool at the Pella Aquatic Center. Both were from the Kansas City area, and were in Pella for a camp being held at Central College by the Central Western Iowa Des Moines Chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
According to the Pella Police Department, dispatch received a 911 call at approximately 9:50 p.m. Wednesday night that the two juveniles had been found at the bottom of the pool. CPR was being administered when paramedics arrived, and both boys were transported to Pella Regional Health Center, where they were pronounced dead. Autopsies are being scheduled and the police investigation is ongoing.
Approximately 220 young people were at the Pella Aquatic Center Wednesday night, which was being leased by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes as part of a camp they are holding at Central College. The Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) is headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. According to a statement from the FCA, the Pella camp is one of more than 325 being held across the nation and in several other countries by FCA this summer. More than 50,000 student athletes and coaches are expected to attend these camps.
In the FCA camps like the one at Pella, boys and girls can receive instruction from high school and college coaches in different sports such as basketball, wrestling, football, tennis, soccer and track. Trained counselors are now working closely with those young men and women who remain at the Pella camp for the duration of the planned week’s activities. The Pella Aquatic Center is closed all day Friday.