A childhood game gone wrong left a 10-year-old Texas boy dead in a dryer from electrocution, officials said.
Fernando Hernandez Jr., a third grade student at Harris Elementary School in Houston, was found unconscious in a dryer on Friday after a game of hide-and-seek and Nerf gun wars, KTRK-TV in Houston reported. Hernandez had been playing with his 9-year-old brother and other kids at the east Houston apartment complex where he lived with his family when he reportedly crawled into one of the tumble dryers in the complex’s laundry room.
The other children called for help when they found Hernandez unconscious in the dryer, and cell phone footage showed paramedics performing CPR on the boy. He was rushed to Bayshore Hospital where he later died.
“I don’t know what happened,” his mother Christina Rodriguez told KMBC-TV in Houston. “I was just inside cooking and my little son came inside and told me my son was dead on the floor.”
Rodriquez said that her boyfriend picked up Hernandez and brought him into the house.
“He was purple and his eyes were open and he was gone,” she recalled.
Hernandez died from electrocution, according to an autopsy report released Monday by the Harris County Medical Examiner’s office. Investigators believe his death was an accident.
Rodriguez said that she had seen her son a mere 30 minutes before he was found unconscious.
“I should have been outside with him, but I was inside, cooking. I just want him home,” she told KMBC.
Hernandez was the oldest of four children. “He was so friendly, everybody loved him," his mother said.
A video tribute, which appears to have been created by a family member, was uploaded to YouTube and shows various pictures of Hernandez, starting from inside his mother's womb.