2-year-old girl who died after falling from balcony identified



Posted on June 19, 2011 at 2:49 PM

Updated Sunday, Nov 3 at 4:23 PM

VIRGINIA BEACH -- The toddler who fell from the fifth floor balcony Friday evening has been identified. Her name is Leah Moats and she is from Staunton, VA.

Police officers believe the 2-year-old boosted herself or climbed over the railing of a balcony at Sandcastle Resort Hotel, where her family was vacationing, shortly after 8:00 p.m. Friday.

The little girl fell through the awning of the hotel's ground floor restaurant and landed in the outdoor dining area.

"I was taking an order at my table, and I heard a huge crash, sounded like a gunshot," recalled Sofia Lambros, whose family owns Ammos Restaurant. "I jumped back. I guess she would have hit me. It was that close, and, next thing I know, there's a little girl laying on the ground."

Lambros ran inside to call for help.

"It was chaos. I was on the phone, talking to 9-1-1. They wanted me to go out to see if everything was okay. I couldn't even hear them on the phone," Lambros told 13News.

Margaret Rivera, a hotel guest, says her brother, who lives in Virginia Beach and has emergency medical training, rushed to assist the 2-year-old.

"He was just really trying to make sure that there was, like, towels around her, because she was bleeding from her head," Rivera said.

Paramedics took the girl to Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital. Nightingale then flew her to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

"I'm still in shock," said Lambros late Friday. "It's like a dream. I can't believe it just happened."