APACHE JUNCTION, Ariz. — An Arizona woman passing by a pool jumped in to save a 7-year-old autistic girl from drowning on Sunday.
Zarah Ajmi was riding her bicycle when she saw the girl in a nightshirt scaling the 7-foot-tall pool fence around 8:30 a.m.
“I have three kids so I know how kids act in water. I just knew I needed to go check and see. I had a feeling, go make sure she knows how to swim,” Ajmi said.
She stopped and saw the girl jump into the pool and noticed that the child was not swimming or able to keep her head above water.
“I could see her bobbing out of the water and it was obvious she did not know to swim so I climbed up to get over and it took me a few times and I jumped right in the water, pulled her out right to the steps,” Ajmi said.
Ajmi said her daughter called 911.
Fire and Medical crews arrived and said the girl was OK. Her mother then took her home.
Firefighters said it’s a good reminder that drownings don’t discriminate and can happen anywhere, even in a pool where there is a fence.
“Maintain that understanding that a barrier doesn’t stop all, it’s just one thing in place,” said Superstition Fire and Medical Captain Brian White.
Ajmi said she doesn’t consider herself a hero.
“Thank God my car broke down and I was having to walk because everything happens for a reason, and I was at the right place at the right time,” she said.