San Diego

Family Holds Vigil for 5-Year Old Boy Found in Rainbow Creek After Extensive Search

“Now I know he’s in God’s hands," said Timothy Campbell, Phillip's father

The family of a 5-year-old boy whose body was found in a creek following an exhaustive search held a vigil Thursday night.

Phillip Campbell's family identified him as the child found by officials Thursday morning, buried in 6 to 8 feet of debris in the water.

Friends and family gathered at the Calvary Chapel in Fallbrook to pray and mourn Phillip's death.

The little boy was last seen near the rain-swollen creek on Fifth Street, east of Interstate 15 on Sunday. He was traveling with family friend Roland Phillips, 73, when the car was swept away in the rising waters.

Roland's body was found Monday but Phillip remained missing until Thursday morning.

Although crews with Cal Fire and the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department (SDSO) had been extensively searching the area, the water levels in the creek hindered the efforts.

Even strangers offered a helping hand in whatever way they could, hoping for the boy's body to be recovered

“My heart was breaking for the family. This little boy is missing and we have family that age and kids," said Patty Estrada.

Estrada told NBC 7, although she and her husband don't know the family, they felt compelled to help. They passed out water and food to search crews and workers.

Phillip's parents told NBC 7, they were amazed to see the community come together for their family.

"These people that look out for us, that care about our son, that are willing to look for someone they don't even know--means the world to us," mom Lesley Woosley said.

“Now I know he’s in God’s hands," said Timothy Campbell, Phillip's father. 

The family said Phillip was a student at Mike Choate Preschool. They described him as curious boy, silly and full of laughter.

Phillips lived with the boy's legal guardian and his grandmother.

Family friends are raising money for Phillip's funeral expenses.

Contact Us