Family proposes 'Patrick's Law' after kayak accident

October 27, 2011 8:10:39 PM PDT
A man who saved his five-year-old son but paid with his life in a kayaking accident has inspired his wife to push for a new law.

"Caden kept saying, 'Daddy was hitting me in the face' and we think he just kept picking up his head. Saying, 'stay up, say up, stay up,'" Stephanie Luca said.

5-year-old Caden Luca is the only one who knows what happened August 12 when he went out on the water with his dad.

It wasn't the first time Patrick Luca took his son out on their kayak.

Sadly, it was the last.

"They found Caden about a half a mile out. Nobody knows what happened," Luca said.

Understandably, Caden doesn't want to talk about that day.

His mom Stephanie doesn't know why they got into trouble in Smithtown Bay.

But she knows her 41-year-old husband did everything he could to save their son's life-knowing it would cost him his.

"Caden had on an emergency whistle and safety light and he said just blow that whistle somebody is going to find you. Then he said, 'Daddy is going to go under the water and he was not going to come back up.' He said, 'he was going to go to heaven,'" Luca said.

A passing boater found the Kindergartner floating in the water about 30 minutes later.

Caden was wearing a life jacket

His father wasn't.

The 21-year NYPD veteran's body was found the next day.

"It was such a simple thing he could have done to save his life. I feel like it's a simple thing to put into a law to prevent another family to go through what we're going through. It's horrific," Luca said.

Officer Patrick Luca spent more than 20 years saving people with the NYPD.

His wife Stephanie is carrying that on putting up this side telling people life jackets save lives and starting a petition for Patrick's Law."

If passed Patrick's law would require anyone on a watercraft smaller than 21 feet to wear a life jacket at all times.

"Its common sense if you have a life jacket on it's going to save your life," Luca said.

Mrs. Luca is raising Caden and his two-year-old sister Breya alone.

A life she never imagined she would have to live.

"The kids obviously the only reason I put my feet on the floor. But it's just different now," Luca said.