Update: body found of missing swimmer in Jackson County

Published: Aug. 21, 2022 at 8:42 AM CDT
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JACKSON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - UPDATE: According to the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office, the body of a swimmer in Spring Creek has been found.

Divers found the body at around 12:30 a.m. Monday morning. The body was turned over to the medical examiner’s office.

This is all the information available at this time.

Spring Creek and the Magnolia Bridge boat landing were closed Sunday while rescue efforts continued on the waterway.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call of a subject in distress on Spring Creek on Saturday at around 1 p.m. Deputies responded and determined an individual with a group of military students from Fort Rucker had sunk below the water’s surface and could not be located.

“There are three different dive teams in the water,” Jackson County Sheriff Donnie Edenfield said. “We have sonar equipment in the water, just combing the river. In this river, there’s a lot of trees and brush in the water, so it makes it a little difficult to maneuver for the divers once they’re under.”

The missing person is an international military colonel who is training at Fort Rucker.

“The person who’s missing is an Iraqi Colonel in their military that was at Fort Rucker attending some flat training,” Edenfield said. “Obviously, we want to find him as quickly as possible for the family and everyone involved.”

The JCSO dive team, along with a rescue dive team from Houston County, deployed and worked for most of Sunday.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, Wicksburg Fire Rescue, and the Ft. Rucker Fire Rescue are also assisting in the search efforts.

“We assembled our team and came up here, and we dove last night to search for the victim until about 3 a.m.,” said Houston County Search and Rescue member Lloyd Townsell. “We called the search off until today, and we’re back out here today to continue to search.”

Townsell said his team is determined to find the person, even if the outcome might be grim.

“Yea, unfortunately what we do is tragic, but, in order to give closure to the relatives and loved ones, we exhaust all of our efforts to try to bring closure,” Townsell said.

Rescue efforts will resume Monday morning.

JCSO says Spring Creek Park and Magnolia Landing will be open for recreational use.

Please keep them in your prayers.

If you have information regarding the whereabouts of this subject, please contact the JCSO at 850-482-9624.