How one 2-year-old spent his weekend stuck inside a wooden barrel

Over the weekend, a 2-year-old boy clutched his favorite teddy bear as firefighters cut him out of a wooden barrel in Portland, Tennessee. 

Kelly Strubing and her husband’s family were watching TV in the living room on Saturday when Strubing’s son, Dorian, calmly called out, “Help.”

Strubing told USA TODAY they found Dorian squatting inside the barrel. Each time a family member attempted to lift him out, Dorian said it hurt.

Strubing then decided to drive Dorian to the emergency room where the staff was intrigued by the case. 

“It felt like we had the whole emergency room working on Dorian,” Strubing said. “It’s safe to say they hadn’t seen anything like this before.” 

2-year-old Dorian spent hours stuck inside a wooden barrel. (Photo: Kelly Strubing)

X-rays were taken to examine where Dorian’s knees, feet and hips were but after the staff couldn’t get him out, the Portland Fire Department was called for help.

Strubing said the firefighters originally wanted to use the Jaws of Life to remove him, but they couldn’t find a safe grip on the barrel. 

Eventually, the firefighters used power saws and hammers to cut a hole into the barrel, and Strubing was able to safely pull Dorian out. 

“As a mother, I was a nervous wreck the whole time, and I’m also 30 weeks pregnant with twins, so it was all overwhelming,” Strubing said. “But once I pulled him out, he gave me the biggest hug.”

Throughout the ordeal, Strubing said Dorian was “amazingly” calm and enjoyed a Popsicle right after. The barrel was signed by the ER staff and firefighters and now sits in Strubing’s house. 

“The response from thousands hearing our story has been so sweet,” Strubing said. “I’m just happy to share some good news.”

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