Memory of Hotel Drowning Victim Will Live On

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Family and friends are remembering a 12-year-old boy who drowned at the Plaza Hotel in College Station late Monday.

The boy, Michael Ross of Fairfield, was attending the Missionary Baptist General Convention of Texas.

As police investigate how the boy drowned, convention gatherers are helping others move on.

"It was his very first time to come to this meeting with his church and he had not long ago confessed his call to Jesus and the gospel ministry," Reverend George Curry said.

Bystanders noticed Ross and started CPR until emergency responders arrived, but it wasn't enough. The boy was later pronounced dead at St. Joseph Regional Health Center.

Based on witness reports, police believe Ross could have been in the pool for 30 minutes. Part of the pool is said to be eight feet deep.

Tuesday morning, a prayer service was held at the pool, where gatherers were asked to share their feelings about the tragedy. Officials with the convention say faith will get them through.

"This is a Christian meeting and these are Christian young people, so just reminding them of their faith and hope in Jesus Christ helps to relieve the pain," Reverend Nehemiah Davis said.

"Whatever pain and suffering we go through we are able to give evidence and praise in knowing that he's going to get us through this," Curry said.

What led to the boy's death is still unknown. Police say they are interviewing witnesses and looking into whether the incident was captured on surveillance tape.

As of Tuesday they believe the drowning was accidental, and so far they have found nothing to suggest wrongdoing or negligence.

The convention plans on keeping Ross' name alive. Each year an award will be given in his memory to the largest group attending the gathering.

"As the young man lost his life, someone is finding life through this experience," Curry said. "They are turning over a new leaf to Christ."

Ross was a member of Fairfield Baptist Church. His parents and the church group left the convention Tuesday morning. The church could not be reached for comment.