NEVADA COUNTY (CBS13) — Emergency crews saved the life of a 6-year-old boy after he was pulled from the Yuba River without a heartbeat over the weekend.

Bryan Mathena is a seasoned paramedic and firefighter for the Penn Valley Fire Protection District. He demonstrated for CBS13 what it took to save the child’s life.

When emergency crews got the call, it was hard to reach the child because of the steep terrain.

“We had to shimmy down a 75 percent grade of loose shale rock just to get to the patient,” he said.

When he finally got to the boy, other emergency personnel were already working to get his heart beating again. Mathena jumped in to get the child’s pulse back.

The boy was eventually flown breathing and with a heartbeat to UC Davis Medical Center.

Crews say as families visit rivers and lakes, parents need to keep a closer eye on their children.

“Kids can disappear in a heartbeat. I have two of my own and if you don’t watch them they can run away,” said Capt. Josh Miller.

Fortunately, this child’s family isn’t planning a funeral. The boy is still recovering at UC Davis Medical Center.