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Toddler found in creek passes, responders deterred by rain, hail

Posted: Monday, Sep 16th, 2013

Vada Afton Bridge

FORT BRIDGER – Last Thursday’s deluge of rain and hail may have played a role in the death of a toddler in the Bridger Valley. The heavy rain and hail delayed responders as they attempted to reach a 14-month-old girl who was found in a creek near Robertson.

Vada Afton Bridge, daughter of Daniel and Sorena Bridge of Ft. Bridger, passed away after wandering off and falling into a nearby creek, Jera Porter, Vada’s aunt, told the Herald.

“My sister stepped outside for just a second ... my niece pulled up a little chair to the back door so she could open it,” Porter said.

According to a press release issued by the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office, deputies in the Bridger Valley responded to the report of a missing child after the girl’s family called 911 last Thursday, Sept. 12.

When deputies arrived at the residence, they found family members performing CPR on the child and learned the child had been discovered by relatives in a nearby creek, according to the press release.

The creek’s water level was high due to the recent heavy rainstorms.

Vada was transported immediately by ambulance to Evanston Regional Hospital and was later pronounced dead.

LifeFlight was called, as the Vada was being transported by ambulance toward Evanston Regional Hospital, but the chopper could not land due to strong winds, along with heavy rain and hail.

The Bridges chose not to comment but authorized Porter to discuss the incident. Porter said the family had heard several rumors and wanted to clear them up.

“Circumstances resulting in the death are currently being investigated with preliminary autopsy results indicating the cause of death as drowning,” stated the sheriff’s press release.

According to Lt. Tom Saprony of the Uinta County Sheriff’s Office, the incident is still under investigation and no further information is being released at this time.

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