Newberry officials ID drowning victim

August 31, 2013 

— The victim in a weekend drowing in Newberry County has been identified as a Whitmire man.

Christian Eugene Pearson, 43, was identified Sunday by Newberry County Coroner Craig Newton.

Public safety and rescue officials recovered the body of the missing swimmer from Heller’s Creek Saturday afternoon — a short distance from where he went missing. The creek is off Broad River Road in the Pomaria area of the county.

Pearson was on an outing with family members at the Heller’s Creek Recreation area and was wading in shallow water, Newton said. When he waded into deeper waters near the Broad River Road bridge, Pearson began having difficulty and slipped under the water, Newton said. Family members attempted to find and rescue him but were unsuccessful.

Divers from the Department of Natural Resources, Newberry County Water Rescue and Union County Water Rescue responded to the scene. The cause of death is drowning, Newton said.

No foul play has been suspected. DNR is continuing to investigate.

Mindy Lucas

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