At Life Saver Pool Fence, we’re always trying to keep kids safe. On the Child Safety Resource series, we often interview parents who have lost a child but are now using their traumatic experience to make a difference.
Today, our own Eric Lupton, Life Saver Pool Fence’s president, is speaking with Max Gomez. In 2013, Max tragically lost his son to a drowning incident. Max Jr., or Maxi as he liked to be called, was only two years old.
To honor his son’s memory, Max Gomez and his family started the Maxi’s Gift Foundation. The goal of the Foundation is to help prevent other parents from going through a tragedy like the one that befell the Gomez family. Maxi’s Gift Foundation aims to prevent accidental drowning by offering free swimming lessons and providing education to its community about pool and water safety.
You can watch Eric and Max’s conversation right here:
Learning More About Maxi’s Gift Foundation
Through Maxi’s Gift Foundation, Max Gomez and his family are working to save as many lives as possible. As Max mentioned in the interview above, education and swimming lessons are critical in helping to keep children safe. After all, danger exists near any body of water. To combat this, we all need to beware a false sense of security and unlikely drowning hazards that can still be putting us at risk.
Whether at home or at the beach, everyone should know precautions they can take to help prevent tragedies. To this end, Maxi’s Gift Foundation is creating events that will help the community interact and learn together.
If you’d like to learn more about Maxi’s Gift Foundation, visit its official website or Facebook page. As always, we’d like to thank our guest for sharing his story and mission with us. Keep up the good work, Max!
For more interviews like this one, please follow our official Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts. Additionally, please take a moment to check out our official YouTube channel. The entire collection of Child Safety Source video interviews are archived there.
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Below is a direct transcript of the Child Safety Resource interview with Max Gomez on July 6th, 2018:
Eric: Just like that, just like magic, how are you doing?
Max: Very good thank you!
Eric: Awesome Max! Have we actually ever spoken before directly just online right?
Max: I think just online, yes.
Eric: Maybe one phone call in the beginning?
Max: Maybe when I contacted you forget how many years ago…
Eric: Yeah I’m sure you can figure it out yeah, so when you contacted us Vladimir he must have been like one or two?
Max: He was under one year old, yeah maybe a few months like it maybe six – seven months….
Eric: and how old is he now?
Max: He’s three now
Eric: Okay so two and half years ago.
Eric: That’s it. Time flies man…
Eric: Okay, so if it’s alright with you tell us why did you contact me what were your thoughts…
Max: Well around that time where Vladimir was born I was just nervous just thinking about when he gets to the same age I need to be ready and have everything ready here at the house for him and stuff and one of the things that I saw online was your video, the video that you put out it’s like a cartoon and it has the little ambulance and has…that one, I ran into it I think. I was just going through Facebook I think it’s called Abbey’s Hope and I think they had shared it and I saw it and when I saw that it obviously made me cry and then I contacted them first and I asked them for advice, I asked him about the company if they knew anything about the company ….but then they directed me to you, they gave me your name and then I think I went on your website and then I contact you through there about the pool fence and…
Eric: So do you mind talking about Maxie?
Max: yeah well he was two-and-a-half years old and what happened was I was at work and my wife was washing clothes and so the washer and dryer were in the front of the house and she took him with her and what happened was she thought that he had followed her to the laundry room but he ended up sneaking back out, but we used to keep the sliding glass door always locked but by then he had figured out how to get in there and unlock it and that’s how he ended up getting into the back yard; was through the sliding back door. Well one of the hardest things is like going to Home Depot and seeing these sliding door locks that I could I just put up higher so he couldn’t reach, I wish somebody would have told me, I would have seen it somewhere, where a simple ten fifteen dollar lock could have saved his life and it’s just one of those things that always goes on in your head- things that you could have done and it just never ends, just thinking about what you could have done different and stuff. But now, I wish I knew then, what I know now that’s why we try to reach a lot of people.
Eric: You know a lot of people don’t know a lot of people don’t realize how big of a deal drowning is, that it’s so prolific that it’s the number one killer of kids now between one and four years old, accidental killer I don’t think a lot of people realize that, did you know that before?
Max: no absolutely not I definitely didn’t know that, I knew we did have that fear because Maxie was so active and climbing everywhere all the time that we always tried to save up money to try and buy a removable pool fence, we just never were able to save up the money you know…like before we used to live in a mobile home and I had my two daughters which were small back then, they were probably like seven and eight years old and they wanted to move into a house with the pool and I told them well the deal is if you guys want a house with a pool you guys are going to have to learn to swim and so they went through their lessons and everything and they learned how to swim, then we started looking for a house so when we bought the house they knew how to swim and I mean I never really thought too much about the fence until Maxie was born.
Maxie was born 2011 and it’s just during that time I think there was some mistake in Escrow which ballooned my payment up to like $3,000 a month for my house and it was so difficult- it was like working three jobs I think to try and make up for that mistake that they made in Escrow and it was just so hard, we’re like barely making enough to pay the house payment and we just could never save up for that pool fence. So what our plan was well let’s just try to teach them ourselves, I don’t know if you’ve seen like pictures of on Facebook on our page, we used to have that floating device thing that a lot of people use. We used to use that we used to take it out and try to teach him to swim but I mean unfortunately he didn’t learn in time and you know the rest…
Eric: So you reached out to us for a pool fence and what happened next?
Max: Well after I had watched the video I went on your website, I saw that you guys had a program where you help out people that go through our situation. I contacted you and you offered to donate a fence to us, you guys along with the King’s Pool Fencing. It came out and installed it for us and well aside from the pool fence protecting Vladimir it also kind of triggered something in our heads where we need to do something because we didn’t have the foundation when you donated the fence to us…
Max: And so it kind of triggered like we need to do something, we need to do something to help people to help prevent this from happening to other people and that’s when we started thinking about doing the foundation and helping out…
Eric: So us giving you the pool fence made you start (I mean not obviously that alone) but that gave you the idea to start the foundation?
Max: Yes, yes I mean we felt so thankful that it was protecting Vladimir right, so we were thinking well maybe there’s people out there that don’t have a fence and maybe they’re in the same situation or they just don’t think they need it, so let’s go out there and let people know. That’s kind of when it when it triggered we need to do something, we need to help, we need to help get the word out just like I wish somebody would maybe told me or I would have heard somewhere; I’m trying to get to as many people as possible.
Eric: That’s really cool. So tell me about the foundation what are you guys doing? The name is Maxie’s Gift right?
Max: Yes, Maxie’s Gift yeah. We were trying to think the people that are involved; my wife and my two daughters and I think the thing that….
Eric: Hey Max I lost you I can’t hear you…there you go
Max: Can you hear me?
Eric: yeah better there you go sorry okay
Max: okay. Yeah so we’re thinking about the swimming lessons and we thought well what better way to think of that gift to give to somebody from Maxie you know so we just have to call it Maxie’s Gift. We just go out there try to raise money to offer swim lessons, to do CPR classes, to give out information and we’ve had a lot of help a lot of support from the community, from our friends. But a lot of the hard work has been done by my two daughters…
Max: Max’s big sisters yeah. They’re so strong I am so proud of them, they have done so much in there at their schools, in the community I mean they’re out there. We did a fundraiser it was a donation drive kind of picking up used clothes, linens and stuff- they were out there you know carrying the bags and filling up a big truck; we rented a big truck from a Home Depot and we filled it all the way to the end and we ended up I think it was about 5,000 pounds of used clothes and stuff and they were out there sweating with her out of shape dad and we went through Savers- it was called Savers like a store a thrift store Savers and they donate I don’t remember if it was 20 cents a pound that they donated. It was like over $1200 that they donated to us, which we used for the swimming lessons.
Eric: Awesome that’s really cool how old are your daughters now?
Max: Now they are 14 and 12
Max: Yeah, but they do a lot they do so much and they also help with a lot of fundraisers at Angel Stadium- that Angels Baseball Team has helped us out a lot; they let us set up in the parking lot and you know whatever we can do we sell hot dogs and tacos, we’re out there cooking trying to make money and we almost get in trouble sometimes security but then we let them know what we’re doing and that we have permissions, they’re cool with it.
Eric: That’s really cool. So how many lessons have you given away so far?
Max: I mean we haven’t raised a lot of money but we try as hard as we can, but we’re probably like between 30 and 40 residents so I wish we were a lot higher but…
Eric: No, I thought you were going to say a lot less than that that’s really cool.
Max: Yeah we get we got a lot of help from the swimming schools around here too – discounts and stuff
Eric: Wow okay. So if somebody wants to get a lesson how do they contact you?
Max: We did have a website until like a couple of months ago that I had to let the website expire it’s getting too expensive and I just feel kind of bad having to pay that much money for a website and then not being able to use that money towards those lessons.
Eric: Well so how much were you paying?
Max: I went through I think GoDaddy.com and I set it up and everything but then it gets kind of expensive after the first year or two and it gets more expensive and it was like over two hundred dollars…
Eric: A month?
Max: No for the whole year.
Eric: Oh for the year
Max: You had to pay. It was like over two hundred dollars and I was like ah maybe I’ll just direct people to my Facebook page or just right and then I just created just a new email because I had the email through the website too.
Eric: right, right.
Max: So basically I just direct people to the Facebook page and that’s how people can request the lessons.
Eric: yeah I think most people are on Facebook anyways you’re probably in good shape. What is it that you’d like parents to know, what is the message you’d like to get out there?
Max: Well for us sometimes it feels a little overwhelming because you want to tell them everything but you can’t really have somebody’s attention for so long because like you start thinking like for us; get the locks up higher or the pool fence, the alarms…
Eric: You know what I’ll be honest you’re the first person who’s ever mentioned those higher sliding glass door locks to me, no one is ever said that to me before…
Max: Well I’m very appreciative of all the parents that have the courage to go out and tell their story like all these people that I follow on Facebook I am so thankful for them because I need to hear those stories too because that way I can let other parents know, like they’ll say “oh well I don’t even have a pool” no but I can tell them well I’ve heard of somebody that doesn’t even have a pool but their son drowned in a pond or a bathtub or the neighbor’s pool things like that. A lot of people obviously you run into a lot of people that they always have like an excuse why they don’t need it and that’s the way I can defend myself by telling them other people’s stories not just my story.
Max: Like I’ve heard the story where they have a pool fence but then like a towel gets stuck in between the doors or just there’s so many, that kid go over to the neighbor’s pool. There’s so many stories that I have them memorized right here and I can use them to let people know and stuff so I am really thankful that’s what I use when I meet people I use those stories, no matter what they say I could I have a story…
Eric: Right, yeah before we got started we were talking about Buddy Miller.
Max: Yeah and that’s unfortunately it’s like you want to get to so many people, like I feel like I’m just one person and I can only get to so many you know, but together I mean I have a lot of friends that have that I’ve made after Maxie passed away. We made new friends and I’m so thankful for them because they helped me pass that message along to other people. Personally I try to go as often as I can to Compassionate Friends; it’s a group where just parents that have lost children and that helps out so much, it gives you so much courage, it gives you so much hope because you’ve seen the grieving process in them and they give you hope that you can learn how to live with the grief. But then they get together and they help you out and they help you pass your message around. So all the way from the ABCDs to bathtub safety to beach safety like I tell you, it’s so any things that. Like I was thinking just recently with my daughter’s we’re trying to see what can we give away next time we do a fundraiser; Let’s say if they help us by buying an Angel ticket, we’ve given out you sunglasses, we’ve given out beach balls with safety information on them or flyers or stuff like that… what can we do for people to get safety information while they’re getting something.
One of the things that I was thinking like oh maybe we can get some hats that we can give away for the Sun and we can put like the ABCs ABC but then I was thinking man I’m going to have to embroider a bunch of stuff everywhere because there’s so many things I want to tell everybody I don’t want to leave anything out but…
Eric: it will look like a little look like a NASCAR…
Max: Yeah but we’re always thinking of ideas of how we can get people to help us spread the word and stuff and wear t-shirts, whether it’s t-shirts; like here I’m wearing my live like Jake…
Max: …things like that, things that help you get the message out faster like further away.
Eric: Have you talked to the folks over at Families United
Max: No I…
Eric: You know what I’m talking about?
Max: I think I do
Eric: It’s called Families United to Prevent Drown and it’s Abbey’s Hope and I’m not sure if live Like Jake but you know Abbey’s Hope and Paul DeMello and its Josh the Otter and a lot of the charities and nonprofits who were started after they lost a child to drowning and Families United is them joining together into one kind of bigger organization. They share resources, they make sure that they’re not reinventing the wheel if somebody’s already doing something they can use their educational piece and they kind of act like you’re talking about with the group you go to that kind of a network for each other- obviously they’ve all lost a child to drowning and or I think doesn’t always have to be a child, I think maybe somebody has a sibling- yeah they’ve all lost someone to drowning. I think it’s a child every time and it is anything if you…Blake and Kathy Collingsworth with Josh the Otter when we reach out to them they’re great people and Families United is an amazing thing that they’ve put together not just them but all of the different organizations because there’s so many of you guys unfortunately. They talked about how it’s a club that they love all the members of but they don’t want anymore, they don’t they don’t want anybody else joining and it seems like they’re getting new members all the time unfortunately.
When I was on the board of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance they used to invite us every year they have a suite at the hotel room that’s the NDPA Conference they had that and they have it there in case a mom or dad who’s lost somebody is feeling overwhelmed by the conference and wants to go somewhere quite separate, away from everybody just to chill out. So they’ve got this hotel room set up for that where somebody can go to get away and they have like a cocktail hour thing every year and they invite the board members there and they go around the room and each person one at a time tells the story of how they lost their child, what the circumstances were, about their kid and kind of what they’re up to now and it’s one of the more powerful things I’ve ever done -to sit in that room and just hear just one parent after another parent after another parent this must be fifteen people in a room it’s …yeah you just don’t want anymore and that’s why we do it
Max: And those people are the people that can help you the most they understand your situation and
Max: Just like that Compassionate Friends that I go; to they give you a lot of ideas and how to grieve and how they grieve and how you shouldn’t feel weird by certain things that you do in the grieving process because people see you in a different way you act different. I mean I’ve been told by a lot of people that I’m not the same person, I changed a lot and stuff; of course I mean…
Eric: How could you be?
Max: Yeah I mean it’s tough, you can’t go back it’s to how you were before your life’s never going to be the same but the people that have gone through a loss they’re the ones that can help you a lot and like you said that community of people working on drowning prevention there’s so much help there, I’ve had Paul DeMello reach out to me before….
Eric: He’s just the best
Eric: Paul DeMello is amazing you know what’s funny everyone I talked to you mentions him like…
Eric: He’s so prolific he’s out there all the time and
Max: He has a lot of energy
Eric: Yeah everyone talks about how Paul reaches out to them, anyone I talked to knows Paul you maybe they don’t know Families United maybe they don’t know some of the other ones but everyone knows Paul and they know him because he’s talked to them personally and he offered his advice…yeah we need more Pauls’ in the world we really do Paul is an amazing guy
Max: Yeah it’s pretty calming he’s all the way on the other side of the United States and he reached out to me and he text me and gave me a call. His son passed away I think it was they had a little pond in the backyard he’s in New York yes I think theirs is called Respect, he has a lot of different ones he as one for water he has one for where they do kindness pass out those little cards to do little like nice things and also Kerri Morrison
Eric: Yeah she’s great
Max: She was out here in California and we’ve met up with her, spent a couple hours and I mean you learn a lot a lot a lot from those people and you feel their love and support and just you know people that we’ve met here their grieving the loss of their children too. They’ve become our friends and they helped us out, they show up at our events and I think it’s because they know that we need support and they need support and we support each other.
Eric: So I think I cut you off you were saying how one thing you wish you had was the locks on the side of that store and then you’re going to say…what else would you want people to have?
Max: I wish you can have everything from home alarms, pool fences and stuff…but the one thing that I would like them to have the most is the information
Max: The information the things that they can do to prevent it that’s the one thing that I you know get their kids and swimming lessons and stuff like that. One of the things that we’ve been trying to do is reaching out more also to children especially before the summer, that’s where my daughters have done a pretty good job at their schools and we’ve had their schools do the pledge the swimming pledge from pool safety
Max: Yeah, then we do like a raffle with couple baskets with pool stuff slip and slide and some beach towels and stuff for the summer. So every kid that brought back their pledge signed by their parent, took it back to the school and the school was nice enough to put it in a big barrel and take out a winner
Eric: Oh nice
Max: Every day of the week somebody would win a new a big basket with gift cards and stuff, so that was cool the kids were excited about participating they’re winning something cool at the same time they’re learning. That’s what we’re trying to do think of ideas and how we can get more kids involved, maybe sometimes the parents are busy but if the kid goes up to their parent goes like I learned this and this and this and you know maybe they can convince their parents….
Eric: Right and the kids are a big factor I mean how many times have you had your daughter remind you to put on a seat belt right?
Max: Yeah stay off the phone and all that stuff…
Eric: Yeah because they hear it they learn it so you know or whatever it is kids they learn it in school, they come home and they educate parents so it’d be great if kids were coming home from first grade and telling mom and dad they need swimming lessons, they need a pool fence. I know I think that’d be great you know. I love your idea with the raffle that’s really cool
Max: Yeah I’m really thankful that the school helps out they go out of their way, they helped us out with that fundraiser they told all the parents to donate clothes, they kept them in one of the classrooms so I picked up a bunch of bags from the school too it’s called a Murdy Elementary and that was actually my Elementary and now my kids go there too. So we’ve been there for so many years and they’re so awesome to our family I’m so thankful for them they’re really, really cool staff and they’re really nice.
Eric: Is that a public school?
Max: Yeah, yeah all my kids have gone there and now Vladimir is going to go in there too so…
Eric: That’s amazing that’s like two generations that’s really cool that’s awesome and it’s cool that you are in the same area that where you grew up
Max: Yeah, yeah we’re still we’re here in this area and that is why we focused a lot of our stuff here in Garden Grove so well yeah
Eric: Not many people do that I’m in Boynton Beach right now and I was born literally down the street at the hospital but that’s the hospital down the road and I always joke that I’m one of the seven natives of Boynton there’s not, many of us
Max: Yeah we love we love this place and it’s cool and people are nice, they’re open to listening to us and there’s always that one person that no matter what you tell them they don’t they don’t want your advice but…
Eric: I know
Max: I mean it’s all right I mean we just want them to hear us even if they don’t want our advice at least they heard us.
Eric: I get them on my Facebook all the time you know people responding to my stuff and…
Max: That’s another thing I want to talk to you about was Facebook because I see that like I said together us as adjoining community we can do so much, we can reach so many people and we could use our voices to help out so many people especially on Facebook messages get out there a lot quicker, a lot further and so I just wish, I hope that we can continue to work together and support each other, I just see sometimes people kind of -well I think like that thing now where everybody’s fighting on Facebook fighting on social media stuff and I think we should just stick together. We’re all on the same we’re on the same boat we should all stick together and support each other, not go after each other and I see little things here and there I just wish we could all just stick together, just go at it hard and just keep spreading the word and saving lives and yeah sharing have a lot of power…
Eric: It does and it’s hard you’ve got a lot of different people that are really passionate about what they’re doing, some have really strong opinions as happens you know and yeah it leads to arguments. But I think sometimes in those arguments good ideas come out sometimes or at least maybe thoughts are matured I know I’ve had my mind changed someone has told me that I’m saying something wrong or they shouldn’t use the phrase and I didn’t know why, they told me and I changed my behavior I was wrong. So there can be some benefit but you’re right the fighting as a whole is tough, especially in our very small group right?
Max: Yeah we should just keep our minds open, our heart open, listen to everybody ideas and everybody’s way of thinking just because it’s not the way you think it doesn’t mean its wrong
Eric: Right of course. I was going to say that the first time I ever heard of Garden Grove was in the song by (33:28)
Max: They just had a little concert like to honor them or something on the street…
Eric: Oh yeah
Max: Yeah it was pretty cool I could hear all the way over here from my house, I wasn’t going to go over there with my kids
Eric: Right yeah of course not they’d leave stoned
Max: Yeah you could smell all of it over here
Eric: Of course, I was a big fan of them in high school I used to love those guys
Max: Yeah me too…
Eric: Of course it would be hard not to right. How is your pool fence?
Max: It’s still there we take care of it, clean it up, keep it clean and we don’t take it out, right now we haven’t used the pool in a while it’s actually empty right now because it’s kind of peeling a little bit. I’m going have to see whenever I can save up a little money and fix it- it’s so hard just so expensive everything here and so just whenever we have a little bit of money then we’ll probably fix it but even an empty pool is dangerous
Eric: Of course yeah you could fall and hurt yourself yeah and how is Vladimir doing?
Max: He’s just as active as his big brother man all over the place, he’s taking his swimming lessons and he loves the water he loves swimming and we’re really proud of him, he’s helped us out so much. He’s such an amazing and special little boy, he’s brought back a lot of happiness to us. Because when Maxie passed away we did it just felt like the house felt quiet, dark like it just felt horrible- but then when Vladimir came along they just he lit up the place again and everything he does just reminds us of Maxie they like a lot of the same things so we’re so thankful for him and I’m so thankful for my daughters that they’re so strong, so passionate about this, helping people out I know they’re all going to go on to do great things and help people out and stuff and really proud of my kids.
Eric: So Vlad is three and a half right roughly?
Max: Yeah three and a half, he turn October 1st
Eric: Alright that’s a good guess I remember. I think it’s cool that we were able to get you guys a full fence; Zack talks about you all the time and it’s a makes me feel good to know that he’s okay and everything’s good with him
Max: Yeah they keep in touch, yeah they’re really cool I sat there and watch them install the whole fence and how they did everything is pretty really cool very professional and they’re awesome.
Eric: They’re good folks I talk to Zack all the time and he’s proud of the fence that he did for you guys you know he talks about it a lot. It’s nice that we can do it I don’t know if you know Paul, we call him our chief giving officer; if we find a family that has had a fatal or non-fatal drowning that is eligible to receive one of our pool fences donated- Paul is the guy that reaches out, calls the family, tells them gets a hold of them it kind of sets it up by his choice Paul asked me if he could do that, I told him I love him too so he does that. I warned him that they’re hard to give away that we don’t give away as many pool fences as we’d like to that for some reason you think that’d be easy to give away a pool fence- they’re not cheap but yeah I’d love to give away more I wish we could get out to more people and get some free pool fences I really do…that’s the thing so.
Max: One of the things that I always wondered and I’ve never looked it up on your website or anywhere else is, when you buy a pool fence whether your company or any other company is there options for payment or is there always just one payment up front for the fence and that’s it. I was just wondering if there was like some kind of different options of payment because that’s one of the things I was thinking about because I wonder if there was a company that would allow you to pay in payments and make it easier for you to just go ahead and decide you know what I’m going to get the fence if I can pay it in payments instead of having to save up for it or what if in the time that you’re saving up what if something happens, well I always wondered that I’m just asking because…
Eric: Yeah I know it’s a good question; so we have dealers throughout the country like Zach right so we’ve got Life Saver Pool Fence, Kings Pool Fencing in Los Angeles, Life Saver Pool Fence of New Jersey, Life Saver of Atlanta, in New York and Montreal there’s about 60 of them in the US and then we’re in 15 countries and five continents; there’s a Lifesaver in Dubai, a Lifesaver in Thailand, in France etc. Each of them run their own businesses like Zack does and I know some of them offer financing but it’s kind of left up to the individual dealer to decide that. But I know a lot of them take credit cards and that’s kind of its own form of financing, you can put it on a MasterCard or Visa and then pay that off over time and I think some do actually offer payments but that’s a good call the ones who don’t maybe it’s worth talking to them and see if they could get that set up because you’re right that might save somebody right?
Max: That’s what I was thinking when you had put up a post that you were looking for somebody in Orange County, me and my wife we’re thinking what if we try to do something like; what if we can do something where we can offer that option to somebody where they can pay in payments and I know so many people that would probably get them just if they had the opportunity to pay payments I don’t know like I don’t know- it was just a thought that ran through my head.
Eric: No it’s a good idea, I like it thank you honestly that’s really cool. Oh I was going to say Maxie and I have something in common; I am a giant Superman fan but I am (you can’t see it behind me) but I have Superman stuff all over my house almost too much it’s a problem like I have a giant to super… I have like a big statue over here, there’s Superman stuff next to me and yeah I’ve got super stuff everywhere-it an addiction. So whenever I see him in that shirt and I think it’s cool because I’m a giant fan of Sir Ben too.
Max: Huge, huge superman fan it’s funny I tell the story about him where he had pretty much all his t-shirts were Superman t-shirts and so I would take him the closet and say “all right what do you want to wear today?” and so I start going through the shirts I’m like you want this one no, no, no he was waiting for me to get to the Superman shirt no, no and when I get to the Superman shirt I would skip…I would skip and go to another shirt, he was like no go back go back; he always wanted to wear his Superman shirt he had a lot of them though, he had so many of them he had a couple Batman too but….
Eric: Actually oh you probably can’t see it but in the corner it’s Superman’s leg you can see it sticking out over there that’s funny
Max: Oh yeah there it is…
Eric: Yeah that’s his leg sticking out that’s funny yeah I got Superman everywhere man I don’t know why I love superman. But man I know you got to get to work I know that they’re struggling without you there you got to make space parts. So before you go what’s one more thing you want to tell parents let people know?
Max: Just tell parents visit all these websites, visit all these websites that people are putting up and putting information just read up on everything, there’s so much information so many different dangers in your home that you might not know and if you just go through; it’s just so many man from the bathroom to the front yard to the backyard to everything just be open to learning from other people’s mistakes, other people’s experiences. That’s one of the things I always tell my daughters- like don’t learn from your mistake, learn from other people’s mistakes so you don’t make them. For me like I wish I would have heard or read somewhere about putting higher locks on the sliding door, I wish I would have heard it somewhere, which I could have seen it somewhere I just never did and it’s just something so simple, so cheap and it’s just somebody needs to let you know or remind you or you just don’t think about it.
Parents just keep an open mind and even if you don’t have a pool doesn’t mean you’re okay just take your kids out to swim lessons; like I didn’t even know about the pool drains, the different covers the drain covers I’ve never heard about that until I went until I read on Abbey’s Hope and on other Facebook pages- I’ve never heard about that I have a pool and I never knew about something like that. It’s so many things we don’t know and we need to get educated especially having kids.
Eric: Absolutely. Well thank you so much Max I really appreciate it, the work you’re doing is tremendous those lessons that you’ve sponsored no doubt are helping those kids out and the memory of Maxie is living on through you and the work you’re doing and your kids I know he’s proud of you guys- I know I am so I really appreciate what you guys are doing so.
Max: thank you and I really appreciate all the work you guys are doing too and I’m so thankful for my wife for helping us I know she doesn’t get too involved it’s very difficult for my wife to get involved in events and stuff but I know she supports this 100% and she helps out on the events and stuff and I think it’s a lot of times it’s the fear- people might feel guilty kind of what you might feel guilty or people kind of judging and stuff so I understand her I support her when she can’t make it to events and stuff. That’s why a lot of times just me and my daughters, but I know it’s scary for a lot of parents in this situation to go out and tell their story I know it’s scary I mean I don’t know if I would be able to do this if I was the one here at home and I was the one when the whole thing happened I don’t know if I would be doing this right now I don’t, know I don’t know. Also, I’m not a very strong swimmer either so I don’t know what would have happened that day if I would have jumped in for Maxie I don’t know if I would have maybe passed away with him I have no idea. So it’s just that’s why I have so much respect for the parents that do this and go out there tell their story it’s very difficult, you put yourself out there for a lot of criticism and it’s tough man.
Eric: It is heroes every one of you guys are heroes seriously,
Max: Yeah thank you thank you so much for the opportunity thank you for all your support all the people that support us too and our foundation thank you so much the donations; we really thank you guys from the bottom of my heart for walking this journey with us, helping us out.
Eric: And if somebody wants to reach you guys or donate or anything it’s Maxi’s Gift on Facebook right?
Max: Yeah Maxi’s Gift on Facebook
Eric: Perfect yeah thanks Max I really appreciate it you have a great day and go make some tools for Elon Musk man
Max: All right thank you very much for the opportunity
Eric: Take care thank you.