On Sunday night, a tight-knit community in Upstate NY was rocked by the sudden news of a missing 3-year-old boy who wandered out of a house on Easter night.

Immediately, family members, first responders, and seemingly every resident in the  Rensselaer County town searched frantically for little Owen, but the news after a few hours of searching was grim.

In a story published in People magazine, Owen was at his aunt's house for Easter when he stepped outside while dinner was being prepared.

"Without hesitation," according to Sidewinder Photography, "neighbors with flashlights poured into the streets and headed towards the home of the missing child...Members of the community began to search neighborhoods around where the child had gone missing near the ballfield."

A short time later, according to Sidewinder, members of law enforcement went back to the nearby swimming pool - believed to be on the same property where the little boy went missing - and looked again, this time seeing something that recently floated to the surface.

"The searcher grabbed a hold of it and it was the child and immediately pulled the child from the water...Two Sergeants from the Rensselaer County Sheriff's office immediately began CPR on the child."
The heartbreaking incident is being investigated by the Rensselaer County Sheriff's Office as an accidental drowning at this time.

In the meantime, community members are rallying on behalf of the heartbroken and devastated family.

Kimberly Parker, a resident who knows Owen's family set up a GoFundMe on Tuesday with a goal of hitting $15K.
I have been in touch with his family and was given permission to raise funds to help his family with the funeral, among other unexpected expenses related to this situation.  Owen's parents also have two other children to care for as well. My hope is that we can raise enough money to not only cover all expenses related to this tragic event but also some to help allow them time to grieve and not worry about how their bills will be paid during this time.   Anything you can give would be so appreciated. -Kimberly Parker - Owen's GoFundMe

By the time we published this story, over $15,000 dollars in donations had already come in, and the community is doing even more.

 

In addition to the GoFundMe, volunteers from the Pleasantdale Fire Department will go up and down the streets of the community - boots in hand - collecting donations for the family.
Our hearts go out to the entire community as well as local law enforcement and first responders who arrived at the scene, if there's any other way we can help, please reach out.