HUDDLESTON – The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries confirm a young child's body was pulled from the water at Smith Mountain Lake Saturday evening after drowning.
The child was a 9-year-old boy from Durham, North Carolina. Lee Walker, an Outreach Coordinator with VDGIF said he died while swimming in Smith Mountain Lake Saturday. The boy was not wearing a life jacket.
"For youngsters that are around the water, it's imperative their parents make them wear a life jacket. Only a few seconds can make a difference in having a great day and encountering a tragedy," said DGIF division supervisor Karl Martin.
Walker said the incident happened when the boy was playing with other children on a floating trampoline, approximately 50 feet from a dock. When the children left the trampoline and swam back to shore the boy did not return. A call was made to 911 from the residence at approximately 5:40 p.m. When the boy was unable to be located, divers from Scruggs Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad Dive team were called in. Divers recovered the body just before 8 p.m. near channel marker R22, just north of Smith Mountain Lake State Park, in about 20 feet of water.
Multiple area departments responded to the scene. The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries is handling the case.