Mother demands answers after son drowns in Mumford High School pool

Da’Sean Blanding drowns in pool

A Detroit mother is devastated and demanding answers after her son drowned in the pool at Mumford High School.

DETROIT – A Detroit mother is devastated and demanding answers after her son drowned in the pool at Mumford High School.

Da’Sean Blanding, 15, was found unresponsive in the pool Monday afternoon. His mother is livid about the district’s response. She wants to know why he was in the pool in the first place.

“My grandson’s a good swimmer -- I don’t believe he drowned,” his grandmother said.

The swimming instructor was placed on paid administrative leave as the investigation continues, but Da’Sean’s mother, Christina Blanding, said that’s not enough, especially considering her child is no longer alive.

There are still questions about what happened to the teenager. Family members said there were no cameras in the pool.

“They left that boy there,” one family member said. “They left him. Whoever was with him, they left him there and all they had to do if they couldn’t save him was pull him out of there.”

Blanding’s family described him as a good kid who would never hurt a fly.

“Everybody that knows him at Mumford knows he was a cool dude,” a family member said. “He didn’t deserve that. He didn’t deserve to be left like that.”

Blanding said district officials still haven’t reached out to her, but they sent Local 4 a statement regarding some of the allegations from the superintendent.

A GoFundMe page has been created to help with funeral expenses.

Here is a statement from the district:

Yesterday’s loss of one of our students during school hours and at one of our schools has been one of the most difficult incidents we have endured as a School Board/Superintendent team. We are committed to determine what caused this tragic loss at the highest level of transparency once the facts surface regarding what occurred. If the conclusion of the investigation reveals any wrongdoing then we will be sure to hold any and all personnel or students accountable. At this point, the swimming teacher has been placed on administrative leave pending the conclusion of the investigation or the surfacing of more facts regarding the incident.

“We will provide Mumford students with grief counselors as they requested by our students, staff and parents. We sincerely request that the media respect the confidentiality of the student we lost and allow the District and law enforcement to complete our investigation of the matter. We commit to fully updating the media and community about the incident once additional facts surface. We have nothing to gain from hiding the truth of this devastating loss. We owe our student, his family, and the Mumford community the truth and justice they deserve—and we are fully committed to that conclusion.”

About the Authors:

Victor Williams joined Local 4 News in October of 2019 after working for WOIO in Cleveland, OH, WLOX News in Biloxi, MS, and WBBJ in Jackson, TN. Victor developed a love for journalism after realizing he was a great speaker and writer at an early age.

Derick is a Senior Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.