California Man Who Couldn't Swim Dies After Jumping Into Raging River to Save 5-Year-Old Nephew
"He kept holding my nephew up so he could breathe," Ivan Gonzalez said.
A family is in mourning after a man who couldn't swim jumped into a river Saturday to save his nephew and ended up drowning.
Victor Mozqueda's last heroic act was to hold his 5-year-old nephew, Vincent Gonzalez, above his head in the rushing water after the boy tripped on some rocks in California's Sequoia National Park and fell into the river.
"As soon as Vincent hit the water, I guess he saw it, and [Mozqueda] was already in the air by the time Vincent hit the water," Vincent's uncle Ivan Gonzalez told InsideEdition.com. "Victor was already in the water with him.
"He kept holding my nephew up so he could breathe," Gonzalez added.
Other family members, including Vincent's parents, jumped into the water to help as well, but struggled in the strong current.
As he flailed in the water, 22-year-old Mozqueda managed to push Vincent toward the riverbank before he was carried away.
"They never saw him again," Gonzalez said.
As for Vincent, he was unresponsive when he was pulled out of the water, but eventually recovered after receiving treatment at a local hospital, Gonzalez said. The 5-year-old was released from the facility Tuesday.
Gonzalez said Mozqueda wouldn't have hesitated to sacrifice his life for another child in need.
"If Victor would have seen someone else’s kid fall, he would have jumped in," Gonzalez said. "He would always do things for others. All the time. You know, somebody needed help, he would do it ... he wouldn’t ask, he wouldn’t wait for somebody to ask him.
"He would always help."
A GoFundMe page has been set up by Mozqueda's sister to pay for his funeral expenses. As of Friday, it had raised more than $56,000.
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