Boy, 3, tells how he ‘saw grandmother in Heaven’ before being brought back from the dead after falling into pond
By Allan Hall
Last updated at 2:02 PM on 19th April 2010
A boy of three claims he saw his great grandmother in heaven while he was clinically dead after falling into a pond.
Paul Eicke came back to life more than three hours after his heart stopped beating.
It is believed he was in the pond at his grandparents’ house for several minutes before his grandfather saw him and pulled him out.
His father gave him heart massage and mouth-to-mouth during the ten minutes it took a helicopter to arrive.
Paramedics then took over and Paul was taken the ten-minute journey to hospital. Doctors tried to resuscitate him for hours. They had just given up when,
three hours and 18 minutes after he was brought in, Paul’s heart started beating independently.
Professor Lothar Schweigerer, director of the Helios Clinic where Paul was taken, said: ‘I have never experienced anything like it.
‘When children have been underwater for a few minutes they mostly don’t make it. This is a most extraordinary case.’
The boy said that while unconscious he saw his great grandmother Emmi, who had turned him back from a gate and urged him to go back to his parents.
Paul said: ‘There was a lot of light and I was floating. I came to a gate and I saw Grandma Emmi on the other side.
‘She said to me, “What are you doing here Paul? You must go back to mummy and daddy. I will wait for you here.”
‘I knew I was in heaven. But grandma said I had to come home. She said that I should go back very quickly.
‘Heaven looked nice. But I am glad I am back with mummy and daddy now.’
Paul is now back at home in Lychen, north of Berlin in Germany, and there appears to be no sign of brain damage.
Statistics from America show the majority of children who survive drownings – 92 per cent – are discovered within two minutes following submersion.
Nearly all who require cardiopulmonary resuscitation die or are left with severe brain injury.
But the water in the pond was very cold and the boy’s core temperature was just 28c, compared to the normal of 37c.
Cold temperatures slow the metabolism-which means the body can survive for longer without oxygen.
If the temperature had been higher, the team would have stopped trying to resuscitate after 40 minutes because the boy would definitely have been brain dead.
Instead, they carried on with the chest compressions to stimulate Paul’s organs, which had shut down after he breathed in the cold water.
Professor Schweigerer went on: ‘My doctors were close to saying “we can do no more” after two hours of thorax compression.
‘This was because the chances of survival had gone and the little lad must have been brain dead.
‘But then suddenly his heart started to beat again … it was a fantastic miracle.
‘I’ve been doing this job for 30 years and have never seen anything like this. It goes to show the human body is a very resilient organism and you should never give up.’