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Nearly a year later, family speaks after 3-year-old drowned at swim school

After several months of reflection, they started a foundation in his honor, and they want you to be a part of his good story.

The parents of a three-year-old boy who drowned at a San Antonio swimming school last year are talking about their loss.

April and Marvin Chang want their son, Mitchell, to be remembered for his compassion and servant's heart. After several months of reflection, they started a foundation in his honor, and they want you to be a part of his good story.  

"We got to say goodbye to Mitchell holding him, instead of someone pounding on his chest reviving him," April said. "We were given a gift."

Mitchell held on for eight hours without brain activity. 

"He was strong enough to come back to say good-bye," she said. "But, he wasn't able to hold on long enough to save his organs."

February of last year, the three-year-old drowned at the Love to Swim School. His parents dropped him off there as part of a program called 'Date Night.' But the parents' date quickly came to an end when they got a call.

"I could never have imagined or fathomed that I was getting a phone call that my son drowned at a swim school," the mom said.

RELATED: Love to Swim Schools ending Date Night program

RELATED: SAPD speaks out about 3-year-old Mitchell Chang's drowning

They said their youngest was kind and loved freely.

"I feel he was so empathetic for his age, for a three-year-old, to have so much concern on his friends and family," Marvin said. "I was so impressed by that. It is just too bad that the world doesn't get to experience that from him."

They have found strength to move forward because of their other son, six-year-old Evan. He was so close to his brother Mitchell.

"We have to continue," he said. "We have to make sure Evan grows up to be a good person, that he appreciates his family and his brother."

In honor of their son, the family has started a non-profit in his name: The Mitchell Chang Foundation. They're continuing Mitchell's story with two projects. The first is to build this playground in their neighborhood The other is to build a much bigger, inclusive playground called 'Mitchell's Landing.'

"So much of it is for Evan and helping him see the goodness," she said. "There is still good out there. We can even build more good, and we don't want this one moment in life to ruin his."

They want you to be a part of their healing journey. Mitchell's Landing will be in heart of Stone Oak in Classen-Steubing Park. It will be a custom playground, and the parents are right now working with the city.

If you would like to help out with the playground, the family is seeking donations for the equipment. 

For more on the foundation, click here. If you would like to donate, click here.

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