(Story & photo from Asheville Citizen-Times)
Charlotte Fire Department divers found the body of 19-year-old Tre Carter today in 80 feet of water using sonar, the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office said.
Major Frank Stout said the body was found at 2:34 p.m.
Authorities said Carter, 19, drowned Monday evening while swimming with friends at Lake Summit in southern Henderson County.
Henderson County Sheriff’s Office Maj. Frank Stout said this morning dive teams from the Charlotte Fire Department are joining divers from Buncombe and Henderson counties and Upstate South Carolina to continue the search.
Cadaver dogs from Upstate South Carolina also are being used, riding on boats with rescuers.
Stout said Carter and three friends had jumped from a train trestle on the east end of the lake and were swimming toward the nearby dam when Carter began struggling and called for help. Carter was unable to swim to shore, and his friends were unable to help him in the deep water, Stout said.
Diane Tompkins, who was staying in a lakehouse nearby, said her family heard Carter’s screams for help.
“It’s really sad,” Tompkins said. “We can’t get it out of our minds.”
The incident was reported at about 6:45 p.m. Monday. Rescuers searched for Carter until nightfall and a thunderstorm forced them to stop.
Recovery efforts Tuesday were hampered by intermittent heavy rain and gusty winds, along with the depth and chill of the water, Stout said. Teams in boats focused their efforts in the area around the train trestle, in water up to 80 feet deep. The water temperature at the bottom was around 40 degrees, so divers could only stay down a short time.
“It’s really deep and cold,” Stout said. “The divers can only stay in the water about 15 minutes.”
Dive teams from Buncombe and Henderson counties were rotating their efforts to keep divers in the water. Visibility at the bottom, even with lights, was only about three feet, Stout said.