Henderson man drowns in Kerr Lake
A Henderson, N.C., man drowned in Kerr Lake on Sunday in a stretch of water just outside of the designated swimming area at Longwood Park near Clarksville.
The victim was Larry Bobbitt, 27. His body was located by search and rescue personnel about 8:30 p.m. on Sunday evening after several hours of searching. The body was recovered in approximately 11 feet of water.
Authorities were alerted to the incident around 5:30 p.m. when a call came in advising that two swimmers entered the water and only one returned to shore.
According to information provided by Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office, the victim and his cousin were swimming together just outside of the designated swimming area in the park when the victim began experiencing issues. The pair made it safely to a buoy in the water, where they clung as a bystander noticed the pair having trouble. The bystander swam a life jacket out to the pair and attempted to help the victim, although to no avail. The bystander returned to shore after experiencing difficulties attempting the rescue, and emergency services were summoned.
Search and rescue efforts began about 6:45 p.m., comprised of personnel from Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office and Dive Team, Lake Gaston Fire Department’s Dive Team, Clarksville and South Hill volunteer fire departments, Mecklenburg Rescue Squad, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Clarksville Police Department.
South Hill VFD stepped in to assist the Lake Gaston Dive Team, which responded with several divers, after one of its vehicles towing the dive equipment experienced a mechanical malfunction while en route to the scene. South Hill VFD responded with one their vehicles, which was used to tow the equipment the rest of the trip to Clarksville.
Longwood Park is managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and located along Highway 15 south of Clarksville. The area offers a boat ramp, campground, play area and designated swimming area.