LINCOLN COUNTY, GA (WFXG) - A teenager is dead after Lincoln County officials said he drowned in a cove off Blackfoot Rd.
Paul Reviere, Lincoln County Coroner, identified the victim as Jacoby Mason, 17, of Lincolnton.
Sheriff Bruce Beggs with the Lincoln County Sheriff's Office said the body was recovered at 10:25 a.m. Monday, and he was pronounced dead by the coroner shortly after.
"They were just enjoying a day at the lake and it just unfortunately turned tragic," said Beggs.
Sheriff Beggs said Mason was swimming across a cove with a friend, and when he did not make it to the other side, the authorities were called. The call came into dispatch a little after 8:00 p.m. Sunday.
"They swam across the cove, the young man who unfortunately drowned, was fatigued and tired and so as they started back, about halfway across the cove, he went underwater. His friend went back to try to rescue him, and was unable to, so he came onto the bank to get help," said Beggs.
The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, and the McCormick County Dive Team searched the water until 1:00 a.m. Monday, and had to pause the search until around 6:00 a.m.
The Columbia County EMA Dive and Rescue Recovery Team were called out Monday morning to send divers down to search for Mason.
This tragic incident has officials on high alert for the rest of the Labor Day holiday as many people head to the lake.
"It heightens your alert to urge people to be more careful and exercise caution and so hopefully people will have a safe holiday weekend," Beggs said.
The Lincoln County community is still trying to cope with the sudden death of someone so young.
"He's seventeen years old, a student at Lincoln County High School. Just a very pleasant young man with a bright future. He comes from a very good family. It's just a real sad occasion for our community," said Beggs.
The coroner has not announced yet if an autopsy will be performed, but he did say all signs point to this being an accidental drowning.