North Carolina authorities said that three people from the same family have been recovered after drowning during a tubing trip on Dan River Wednesday.
Two family members remain at large as of Sunday morning while four others have been successfully rescued within the few hours following the ordeal.
“Words can’t explain what we feel right now,” Megan Heitz, the distraught mom of a deceased 14-year-old girl. “She was my best friend, a sweetheart, and had so much life to live.”
Rockingham County Emergency Management Director Rodney Cates identified the two missing victims as Teresa Villano, 35, and Isiah Crawford, 7.
“We want to remain optimistic that we will do a rescue and not a recovery,” he said Saturday afternoon.
Cates warned tubers and water sports fans to be cautious during activities and always wear safety vests.
“Know where you are, know your surroundings, have your safety vest, your life vest, the inner tube might now always stay inflated you need some type of flotation device to secure you as you are coming on down the river.”