Family, friends of missing teen wait and hope at Cape Fear River - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Family, friends of missing teen wait and hope at Cape Fear River

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Dustin Turner, 18, was swimming in the Cape Fear River Tuesday afternoon when he went missing. Dustin Turner, 18, was swimming in the Cape Fear River Tuesday afternoon when he went missing.
A Cape Fear High School senior went missing Tuesday while swimming with friends in the Cape Fear River. A Cape Fear High School senior went missing Tuesday while swimming with friends in the Cape Fear River.
GODWIN, N.C. -

Family members and friends waited anxiously Wednesday as searchers returned to the Cape Fear River near Wade, looking for missing swimmer Dustin Turner.

Turner, 18, was swimming in the river at the end of Old Bluff Road Tuesday afternoon when he went missing.

"If Dustin could see that, it would mean a lot to him to see all these people here today," said his brother, Steven.

Steven Turner said it was difficult to wait as the search continued. He said the family was passing time by "just talking about stories, trying keep up the faith and all that."

He called his brother "a pretty good country boy from a dirt road just like I am and pretty much everybody out here.

"I know he was well-loved by pretty much everyone he came across. That was his personality. He could fit in with anybody."

Turner attended a graduation ceremony rehearsal at Cape Fear High School Tuesday. Principal Lee Spruill said the rehearsal ended at 3 p.m. He said Turner and his friends went swimming after the rehearsal. As a senior at the school, Turner was scheduled to graduate on Thursday.

"He's going to be on our minds. He's going to be on everybody in the Cape Fear Community's minds," Spruill said about Thursday's graduation ceremony. "We're just going to be praying and hoping for the best."

The Cumberland County Sheriff's Office said Turner went under water and did not resurface. Divers with the Sheriff's Office were called to the area in Godwin to search for the teen.

Divers with the Cumberland County Sheriff's office suspended their search efforts around sunset Wednesday.

Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Debbie Tanna said as more time passes, the search changes from a rescue to a recovery mission. She said the river may have been a little higher than normal and therefore there may have been a stronger undercurrent that pulled Turner completely under the water.

Tanna also said the water is murkier than normal right now. So divers are not able to see very far through the water.

Crews began another day of searching just after 8 a.m. Thursday.

Brandon Herring

Brandon is a North Carolina native and UNC alum who lives in Fayetteville, and covers Cumberland County and the Sandhills. Returning to North Carolina to work as a journalist is a dream come true for Brandon. More>>

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