Bend, Ore. (KVAL) — Brayden Zeisler loved animals, he loved the outdoors and he had an infectious laugh.
On Friday, the families of Brayden and his 5-year-old cousin, Chloe Phillips visited fall creek recreational area.
As they played on the beach a tree fell, Killing Brayden and seriously injuring Chloe. Now, Chloe fights to heal in a Portland hospital.
Maria Zeisler remembers her brave, bright son, “The day of the accident, he just got brave enough to take off his life jacket and to jump in and swim, because he knows how to swim without the life jacket, but he just had a little fear. And he took it off and just started jumping in and swimming without it. And he came up to me with the biggest smile and he goes, ‘Mama are you so proud of me?’ And I said, ‘I am so proud of you baby. That was awesome. Go do it again.’ And he ran and jumped right in again.”
It’s a reminder of Brayden’s spirit — something that tells the two families to look forward and think of Chloe. “She’s here and she’s alive and now we can take the steps forward in getting her healthy and getting her back to walking,” said Maria.