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Final missing North Carolina tuber found Monday afternoon

Teresa Villano was found near the Draper Boat Landing

The search continues for a woman after family tubing trip turns deadly.
The search continues for a woman after family tubing trip turns deadly.

ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, N.C. – UPDATE:

Teresa Villano was found dead around 4:00 p.m. in the Dan River near the Draper Boat Landing Monday afternoon according to the Rockingham County Sheriff’s Office.

She was the last remaining from a group of nine who went missing on June 16th.

ORIGINAL STORY:

Officials in Rockingham County, North Carolina have called off the search for the night to find a woman on Monday.

35-year-old Teresa Villano has been missing since Wednesday when a family of nine went over the Duke Energy dam in Eden, North Carolina.

Four survived, four died and Villano is still missing.

Monday, helicopters flew over the river, searching for any signs of the missing woman. Rescuers said Villano is pregnant.

Over the weekend, a fourth victim, 7-year-old Isiah Crawford, was pulled from the Dan River. His body was discovered around 10 a.m. Sunday.

“Thoughts and prayers go out to the family. It’s very tragic,” said Tommy Barber, the Battalion Chief for the Danville Life Saving Crew.

“You always hope for the best,” said the crew’s Deputy Chief Bryan Fox.

He was one of eight deployed to help with the search. They brought a drone, two boats, and met up with the Pittsylvania County Special Operations Team.

“We joined forces with them upstream and then we searched up to the Carolina line,” said Fox.

“We wanted to make sure we didn’t leave any part of the river uncovered,” Barber.

The Virginia crew was called off the search Friday evening.

Barber said this mission proved challenging. River access is limited, the water is shallow with a lot of debris and they had to make sure rescuers didn’t get worn out in the heat and the elements.

“You do have to have time to rest, decompress and be ready for the next job,” said Barber.

Officials in Rockingham County said there are overhead warning signs about the dam on both sides of the river. It’s unclear if the family was wearing lifejackets, but rescuers said this is a somber reminder to always wear one.

“Do your homework before you get in. And if you’re not an experienced rafter, wear your life jackets,” said Barber.

Fox said he is hoping the family can at least get closure.

“As time goes on, we fear it’s going to be a recovery,” said Fox.

“We’re not at all giving up on this situation. We’re not at all ceasing this situation. We’re just scaling back because we have exhausted all resources at this time,” said Rockingham County Emergency Services Director Rodney Cates.


About the Author:

Lindsey joined the WSLS 10 team as a reporter in February 2019 and is thrilled to call Roanoke her new home!