"Find My iPhone" app helps save lives of 2 Minnesota boys

Investigators in Minnesota say a cellphone app helped save the lives of two boys at a local river.

CBS Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS -- Investigators in central Minnesota say a smartphone app helped save the lives of two boys.

CBS Minnesota reports a man located his missing son on Sunday by using the "Find My iPhone" app. It led him to the Little Elk River near the town of Randall.

"The river is real slow," Chief Charles Strack of the Randall Police Deparment said. "It's a nice place to cool off." 

That's exactly what two friends were doing Sunday at the Highway 115 bridge. But when one of the boys didn't show up for a family function that afternoon, his parents used smartphone technology to find out where he was, and it was lucky they did.

When the dad arrived, he found his son's 12-yeard-old friend unconscious, lying face down in the river. His 14-year-old son was also semi-responsive. He helped pull both boys to shore where first responders took over.

"For a dad or mom or anyone to locate a child like that is beyond belief, but he was still able to get him out and up the river bank," Strack said.

Both of the boys were rushed to a local hospital. The 14-year-old was treated and later released from the hospital. At this time, the 12-year-old remains hospitalized in satisfactory condition.

Strack believes things would have ended much differently had the boy's dad arrived even a couple of minutes later.

"Everything just worked out to save this kid's life," said Strack. He also credited first responders for playing an important role in the rescue.