Tragedy Strikes: Child Buried Alive in Beach Accident

Indiana girl, 7, buried alive playing in hole on south Florida beach

A family vacation turned into a nightmare when two young siblings, Sloan and Maddox Mattingly, were buried alive while playing in the sand on Lauderdale-by-the-Sea beach in Florida. Tragically, Sloan, aged 7, lost her life, and her brother Maddox, aged 9, is currently fighting for his life in the hospital. This heartbreaking incident has left the parents and loved ones of these children devastated.

The Mattingly family had traveled from Fort Wayne, Indiana to enjoy some fun in the sun on the Florida beaches. On February 20, while enjoying their time at the beach, the children were playing in a large sand hole near their parents. Suddenly, the sand hole collapsed, trapping Sloan and Maddox inside.

People at the beach witnessed the terrifying incident and immediately called for help. Emergency agencies arrived at the scene and worked tirelessly to rescue the trapped children. They used support boards to prevent further collapse and shovels to dig Sloan and Maddox out of the hole. After being pulled out, both children were rushed to the hospital. Sadly, Sloan couldn’t survive her injuries, while Maddox remains in critical condition.

The Mattingly family has set up a GoFundMe page to help cover the financial burdens caused by this tragedy. The outpouring of support from friends and family has been overwhelming. Words of love and memories of Sloan’s vibrant personality continue to flood in. Everyone who knew her will remember her as a loving sister, loyal friend, and a truly special person.

Local residents are also shocked by the incident, with one long-time resident expressing disbelief that such a tragic event could occur on their beach. Another local shared their own theory that the sand hole had been previously dug by someone else and was too large for the children to have created. The community is devastated by what has happened and is calling for increased beach patrols to prevent similar accidents in the future.

This heartbreaking story serves as a reminder of the importance of beach safety. The American Lifeguard Association urges communities to work together to create safe beach environments for everyone. By implementing safety measures and fostering awareness, tragedies like this can be prevented, allowing beaches to remain places of joy and recreation.

We extend our deepest condolences to the Mattingly family during this unimaginably difficult time. Let us come together and share this story to spread love and support to this grieving family.