WILKINS TOWNSHIP, Pa. — It has been almost two months since a local man drowned inside a Wilkins Township Comfort Inn.
His family says he was teaching his young daughter to swim when he went under. On Wednesday, his family spoke with Channel 11 News for the first time and shared he was underwater for seven minutes before they were able to get him out of the pool.
“She saw him push the youngest one, the 8-year-old, to the edge of the pool. He pushed her then he treaded water for a few seconds and then he went under,” said Israel’s mother, Olafemi Mandley.
Israel Mandley, 34, was having a heart attack.
An avid swimmer, he began the day on July 24 teaching his three young children how to swim.
He thought the Comfort Inn would be a more controlled environment, but the family said they didn’t realize the pool was 10 feet deep and had no lifeguard.
“There was no defibrillator at the pool and no one to do CPR,” his mother said.
By the time his fiancee could get the kids out of the pool and call for help, Mandley had been underwater for seven minutes. Doctors declared him brain dead at the hospital, and on Aug. 1, his mother took him off life support.
His family told 11 News he saved lives through organ donation.
“He was able to save four lives, one is a 6-year-old little girl,” she said.
Israel’s mother said that in his death, he gave the gift of life, and now she wants to gift her grandbabies with a safe home: the home her son was working on before he died.
“From what I know from remodeling, it’s usually like $65 a square foot to do a remodel, and this is a pretty nice size home, so I am thinking it’s going to be a pretty penny,” Mandley explained.
Israel had started doing all the work himself: a new kitchen and living room were completed. But then a pipe burst, something he was working to fix, and now his mom has started a collection to make sure the home can be finished.
“I know the thing he wants for this home, he wants it to be a viable home for his children,” she said.
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