Campbell said he "walked out mid-thigh level" in the East River and retrieved the baby and started CPR.
Police say the body of a baby boy was found in the water near the Brooklyn Bridge in Manhattan Sunday afternoon.
The two witnesses separately called 911 after it was reported that the baby was discovered in the waters off lower Manhattan at about 4 p.m. Sunday, sources said.
Police say it wasn't immediately clear why the child was in the water, and no parent or guardian was present.
Chiropractor Monte Campbell said his wife, Diana Campbell, first noticed the baby. "And I was like, 'Come get the baby out of the water, '" she said. An eyewitness said the baby was only wearing diapers.
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A baby boy was found unresponsive in the East River near the Brooklyn Bridge on Sunday, prompting New York City officials to launch an investigation into the child's death. The cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner.
Her husband, Monte Campbell, who is a chiropractor, told the Times he called 911 and that when he was put on hold he decided to make sure it was a real baby and not a doll.
He practiced CPR on the baby until an ambulance arrived and brought him to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead. The eyewitness also said it did not appear that the baby fell in from the shore. Both park-lined shorelines are usually teaming with tourists this time of year.
It was unclear how long the baby had been lying there.