A touching video of a father and his son rescuing a four-year-old autistic boy from drowning has gone viral

Little Xavier Rigney, from Lawrence, Kansas, managed to escape his home and make his way to the complex’s fenced-in pool. He dove into the pool’s deep end. 

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While Xavier started to struggle to get out from the water, Maddox Westerhaus, 12, ran to immediately inform his father, Tom.

To save the drowning boy, Tom, a former lifeguard, hustled over and jumped the locked pool area. 

Tom used his lifeguard training from 15 years ago to start CPR on Xavier, who changed colour and had become blue after being underwater for three minutes and 22 seconds.

Tom told KMBC – 

“Everything I knew was a good sign when he started coughing up water, and I just didn’t realise I had to keep going for so long.”

Xavier’s grateful mother, Alexis stated, holding back tears – “I don’t know what I’d do without him because he’s my best buddy.”

The city of Lawrence, Kansas, awarded Tom and Maddox for saving Xavier’s life.

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Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurological and developmental disorder that affects people’s social interactions, communication, learning, and behaviour. 

Although autism can be diagnosed at any age, it is classified as a “developmental disorder” since symptoms usually arise between the ages of two and four. 

Autism is now being diagnosed in more children than ever before. However, the most recent figures could be higher due to changes in how the disorder is diagnosed, not because more children have it.