Second Whitewater Rafting Death in Two Weeks in Tennessee

Filed in Gather News Channel by on June 20, 2011 0 Comments

A whitewater rafting death was the last thing expected when a group of students from Atlanta, Georgia went out for a day of fun on the Ocoee River in Tennessee. A 14-year-old boy, who is not being identified, drowned on Sunday afternoon. The boy fell overboard and became trapped in a swirling mass of water. How horrible for a father to lose his son on Father’s Day!

A crew member was able to dislodge the boy’s body. CPR was started before first responders arrived at the scene, and he did have a pulse at that point. He was taken to Copper Basin Medical Center. The group was on a youth camping adventure with Big Frog Expeditions.

The area where this accident took place is near the Ocoee Whitewater Center, which was the home of the 1996 whitewater rafting events for the Olympics. Whitewater rafting, as well as tubing and kayaking, are extremely popular activities in this particular area of Tennessee.

Two weeks ago on Sunday, 36-year-old Jay McKelroy drowned while on a guided raft tour on the Ocoee River. It is possible that McKelroy’s drowning was due to a medical condition. Autopsy results have not been received to verify that or not, according to the Cleveland Daily Banner.

It is sad that a second whitewater rafting death has occurred on the Ocoee River in Tennessee. As with any sport or activity such as whitewater rafting or tubing, use caution. Accidents can happen even under the best supervision.

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