The parents of Henry Bowman Backer issued a statement drawing attention to their son’s drowning death and pleading with the community not to forget their child.
In a letter to the editor, Ellie and Stephen Backer say their son, who was 3 years old when he drowned in the Field Club’s pool due to negligence, should be starting kindergarten this fall. “The anguish our family has experienced is impossible to communicate,” the Backers wrote. To see their full statement, as well as a link to the victim impact video they provided to the court, click here.
In June, the Field Club’s general manager Scott Anderson, on behalf of Boathouse LLC, pleaded guilty to corporate involuntary manslaughter by wanton or reckless conduct. In pleading guilty, the club avoided an indictment. The club was put on five years probation and paid $100,000 in restitution, which Henry’s family is donating to the Red Cross for lifeguard training. As part of the terms of probation, Judge Mark Gildea made it clear that neither the club nor its attorneys should publicly contradict the club’s acceptance of responsibility.
“This summer will end soon. Our family’s grief in losing a beloved son, grandson, and big-brother will not,” the letter from the Backers states. “Allowing this tragedy to fade from your community’s memory does a grave dishonor to Henry. We ask that you have the heart to imagine yourself in our shoes.”