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“Leading Cause of Death for Children”: Mother of Michael Phelps’ Three Kid’s Shares Brutal Facts Concerning Child Safety

Published 06/06/2023, 10:30 AM EDT

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In 2008, the tragic death of Joshua Collingsworth left his parents devastated. Two and a half years old, Joshua Collingsworth drowned in his family’s backyard pool. The saddening incident served as inspiration for his parents, Blake and Kathy Collingsworth, to establish the Joshua Collingsworth Memorial Foundation. The foundation advocates child pool safety around the world, with the added support of Phelps. 

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Michael Phelps and his wife, Nicole Johnson, have worked to promote water safety through the Michael Phelps Foundation. The Phelps stand‌ strong with their relentless efforts to promote water safety for children. Being an integral part of safety campaigns, Nicole recently shared some stats about drowning cases among children.

Nicole Phelps’ Support for Parents and Child Pool Safety Awareness


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In a recent Instagram story, Nicole reposted a post by @poolsafety, ‘remembering Joshua Collingsworth” with the hashtag #notonemoredrowning. The page covered Collingsworth’s story, highlighting their mission at @joshtheotter, aiming to raise awareness. Phelps shared “Drowning is the leading cause of death for children under the age of 4 and second leading cause of death for ages 5-14”

“My heart goes out to the founders of @joshtheotter…. they do a wonderful job of spreading water safety awareness,” Nicole added. The Collingsworth family practices Otter Spotter Day to spread awareness to teach kids about water safety in 38 states and four countries. The Phelps have consistently contributed to the Collingsworth family’s cause and helped in the funding of their book, “Josh the Otter.” Phelps also worked on a public book signing in 2014 and encouraged bidding on various auction items to raise funds.


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The swimming legend and his wife work to promote water safety through the Michael Phelps Foundation and have publicly promoted it. The foundation focuses on supporting budding swimmers, promoting safety lessons, and guiding them through their course. In 2020, Phelps and his son Boomer linked up with the PAW Patrol characters to deliver swimming lessons.


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Phelps teaches his son about water safety 

The popular children’s show PAW Patrol launched a worldwide water safety campaign called “PAW Patrol Safety First!” The initiative seeks to educate children about water safety and prevent accidental drownings. The decorated swimmer serves as the PAW Patrol Safety First! Water Safety Ambassador for the World. He continues to engage with several campaigns that support the cause and shows up as a true influencer in the swimming community.


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The Collingsworth family is doing everything to encourage parents and introduce water safety awareness at an early age. The Phelps family also provides an excellent example of young children learning the fundamentals of swimming safety. Phelps has worked to promote water safety education and give swimming lessons to underprivileged kids through the Michael Phelps Foundation. Joshua’s tragic accident adds value to water safety education and lays the groundwork to avoid future drowning incidents.

Watch this story Swimming Legend Michael Phelps’ Top 5 Iconic Career Races

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Written by:

Divya Purohit


One take at a time

Divya Purohit is a sports writer at EssentiallySports specializing her coverage in American sporting events. She recently found US Sports writing to be a niche that she enjoys and began following sports. Divya enjoys researching and creating various pieces of articles.
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Edited by:

Brandon Gabriel