Everyone has experienced that moment when your instinct tells you something’s not right. Oftentimes we may ignore it and then regret not following that gut feeling. In this case, it was fortunate that Topeka, Kansas police officer Aaron Bulmer didn’t ignore his instincts.
While responding to a robbery call near Central Park in May, he spotted a young boy walking alone. The lack of adult supervision made Bulmer want to stop to investigate.
“I just felt like God was telling me you need to get around the block and go find out where that little boy is going,” Bulmer told CNN.
But when he stepped out of the car, the boy was no longer in sight.
He walked around and saw the young boy—he’d fallen in the pond.
Footage from Bulmer’s body camera showed the boy struggling to keep his head above water.
Bulmer immediately sprinted toward the boy and jumped into the pond without hesitation.
“He was struggling. I saw a left hand go up in the air and then I saw his face in the water and I could see that he was just gasping for air. And, you know, it scared me,” Bulmer told CNN.
As Bulmer lifted him up, the little boy—only 4 years old—cried out.
Bulmer felt huge relief. It could have been his own son.
“I heard that cry and that was like music to my ears as a parent because he was going to be all right,” Bulmer said.
“He would have drowned. I would have said 30 seconds to a minute … I’m thankful that I was in the right place at the right time to rescue Elijah,” Bulmer told CNN.
A passerby helped to lift the boy out while Bulmer called for assistance.
The boy was later reunited with his father, Jacob Hamby.
Jacob was at home with his 4-year-old son Elijah that day. According to CNN, Jacob left his son for a moment to go to the bathroom. When he returned, Elijah was gone.
His parents didn’t know that Elijah had learned how to unlock the deadbolt door lock.
Jacob was out in the streets calling out for Elijah, and neighbors soon joined in. Unable to locate his son, Jacob finally made the call to his wife to let her know.
“My heart slowly dropped down to my stomach,” Jaclyn Hamby said upon learning the news.
Another police officer eventually found Jacob and notified him that Elijah was rescued from the pond.
“No words or actions can show how thankful we are that Officer Bulmer was where he was when he was,” Jaclyn Hamby told ABC News.
“I’m very grateful that everything turned out the way that it did. Because things could have been way worse,” Jaclyn said.
When speaking about Bulmer she added, “I believe he would have done it whether he was in uniform or not.”