Jan 7, 2011 1:39 AM by Zach Thaxton

Toddler dies after falling in icy Arkansas River in Canon City

A 2-year-old Cañon City boy who wandered away from his home Thursday afternoon has died after being pulled from the freezing waters of the Arkansas River.  Sean M. Marques passed away at 10:04 p.m. at St. Thomas More Hospital in Cañon City despite intensive efforts by doctors to save him, according to hospital spokesperson Diane Wiersum.

Marques was reported missing at around 3:20 Thursday afternoon, around 30 to 45 minutes after he was last seen playing in the front yard of his home near South Raynolds Avenue along the north side of the Arkansas River.  A search team nearing 100 people quickly assembled, comprised of members of the Fremont County Sheriff's Office, Cañon City Police, the Cañon City Fire Department, members of the Department of Corrections, and even members of the forest service.

At around 4:40 p.m., Marques was found partially submerged under ice in the river about 1/8th of a mile from his home.  It is not known how long he had been under water.  He was rushed to St. Thomas More Hospital, where doctors worked for nearly six hours to try to raise his body temperature and save his life, but he died just after 10:00.

In a statement, Sean's family said, "Our son passed this evening.  We ask for prayers for our family and for your respect for this time.  Our family will need each other."

"Finding him in the river was obviously the last thing we wanted," said Sergeant Don Pinover with the Fremont County Sheriff's Office.  He says this serves as a reminder of how quickly children can wander off and into harm's way.  "They can cover a lot of ground and you just can't let them out of your sight."


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