Tennessee girl ‘doing well’ after brother died rescuing her from frozen pond, pastor says

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Benjamin and Abigail Luckett

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SHELBY COUNTY, Tenn. (WREG) — A 6-year-old girl is recovering two days after a plunge into an icy pond that killed her older brother as he tried to save her, the children’s pastor said.

Abigail Luckett was taken off a ventilator Tuesday morning and is now able to talk to her family, said Pastor Stacey Stilgenbauer of Leawood East Baptist Church in Cordova, Tenn.

“She seems to be doing well,” he said.

Her brother Benjamin Luckett died Sunday trying to save his little sister.

Stilgenbauer said Benjamin, Abigail and another brother were playing near a pond on their property Sunday morning when Abigail fell through the ice.

He said Benjamin did not hesitate going in after her.

Shelby County firefighters responded to a water rescue after both children went into the icy water. Benjamin and Abigail Luckett were both rushed to Le Bonheur Children’s hospital.

“They said the best they could tell, he was trying to keep her above water. So, it’s an incredible sacrifice that he was willing to make to save his little sister,” said Stilgenbauer.

Stilgenbauer said the other brother ran for help. He said the children’s father, Robert Luckett, was able to get Abigail out of the water, but couldn’t get to Benjamin. 

Stilgenbauer said the family is mourning their loss, but grateful Abigail is recovering and overwhelmed by the support from the community.

“Christine, the mother, has told me a couple of times to make sure we thank people. To tell them we are extremely thankful for the prayers,” said Stilgenbauer.

Leawood East Baptist is collecting a love offering to help the family with funeral and medical expenses. To give, click here and type in the Luckett name.

Friends have also set up a GoFundMe Page for the family.

Since the accident, the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office put out a warning to be careful around frozen ponds, pools and lakes because the ice is not thick enough to support body weight.

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