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TOWN MOURNS: Brothers Drown In Freezing Pond

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Two brothers drowned in southwest Iowa this weekend, after they fell through the ice on a pond.

A nine year old boy and his eleven year old brother were just doing what farm boys do in the winter, playing on the ice on a pond, when the ice broke and the two went through.

Rescue workers tried to save the Prescott boys, but they were too late.

Their lockers at St. Malachy School show just how loved Nathan and TJ Frey were. The lockers are covered with dozens of notes from kids who miss their friends.

"A really neat thing to see, that their lockers are filled with notes and it isn't just the fourth grade kids and fifth grade kids. it's kids at all grade levels who are tacking notes to their locker, just as a message to TJ and Nathan," says school principal John Walsh.

Nathan and TJ Frey were inseparable. They played together. They laughed together. And on Saturday, the two died together.

Police say they were playing on a frozen pond on their family's farm in Prescott when the ice gave way, and the two plunged into the water. Rescue workers say the ice was deceptively thin.

"At the shoreline the ice was two and a half to three inches thick." says Donny Willit with Adams County Emergency Management, "Out where the kids fell through in the ice ...the rescue crew was actually breaking the ice with their fists. So I'm talking a half inch of ice or so out there."

In a community where everyone knows everyone, folks are taking this tragedy especially hard.

"One of the gals that was doing CPR in one of the ambulances says she looked down and this one boy had the same style of shoe that her little boy had," Willitt says. "And that really tore her up."

Monday, students at Saint Malachy held a prayer service, taking comfort, they say, knowing the two boys who were never apart will be together forever in heaven.

"If you saw one you saw the other," Walsh says. "They were very happy. They were full of life. They enjoyed sharing their life. Great, great smiles."


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