Brave toddler saves the day | photos, video

Sheer panic.

That’s what grandmother Kathy Citroni felt when the back door latch locked on her son’s Spring Farm home as she was checking the washing – with 18-month-old grandson Knox still inside.

“It was just really, really scary,” she said.

“He was in here and there was nothing I could do. The phone was inside, no one else was home.”

But her fear was unwarranted – the clever boy managed to unlock the back door and let his ‘Gaga’ (his affectionate name from his grandma) back inside.

The toddler followed Mrs Citroni’s instructions and pushed a chair over to the back door, before fiddling with the latch and allowing her to slide the door open.

“I nearly suffocated him with so many hugs and kisses,” she said.

“I told him he was a brilliant boy and the next day I bought him lots of presents.

“I knew it was a lot to expect from a little kid to open the door, but then he was here pulling at the handle.

“It took a lot of convincing him to get up on the chair – he usually gets in trouble for climbing on things.”

Mrs Citroni had tried lots of other methods of reentering the house before setting her sights on instructing Knox how to unlock the back door.

Kathy Citroni and grandson Knox Citroni at the back door. Picture: Simon Bennett

Kathy Citroni and grandson Knox Citroni at the back door. Picture: Simon Bennett

She tried yelling out to neighbours and banging a broom handle on the adjoining fences, but no one was at home.

She considered climbing a fence, but knew she would never make it over.

She even tried to break in through a bathroom window while standing on Knox’s toy castle set outside – to no avail.

“I was at my wit’s end by the time I actually got Knox to help me in,” she said.

“I kept thinking, it would be hours before my son would be home.

“Knox of course wasn’t worried at all. He had his toys inside and was happy playing.

“The reassuring thing was that he didn’t disappear, he stayed in the lounge here where I could see him.

“When I was trying to break the window I could hear him calling out, ‘Gaga, Gaga’ and I’m yelling ‘yes, I’m trying to get in, I’m trying’.

“It was terrible, but it all ended well, thank God.”