Pelion High student-athlete dies in drowning incident Sunday

Published: May. 6, 2019 at 5:30 PM EDT
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ORANGEBURG COUNTY, SC (WIS) - A Pelion High school student-athlete died one month before his high school graduation.

Law enforcement responded to a drowning near North on Sunday near Carson Landing at the Edisto River in Orangeburg County.

Family confirmed the name of the student-athlete as Marcus Dwyer, 18.

According to an Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office incident report, one female witness said someone jumped from a bridge located on Hwy. 321 and into the water, encouraging a second person to do the same. The witness also said the two people pushed each other around in the water.

According to a female witness who spoke with responding law enforcement at the scene, the victim “ultimately jumped into the water and began swimming” toward a friend he was with. When the victim got toward others in the water, “he began to struggle,” but one of the others “pushed him away.”

This same witness also called 911 after the victim went under water and did not resurface.

The witness in the incident report says one person went underwater and didn’t come back up. His body was later discovered and he was pronounced dead at the scene by the Orangeburg County Coroner’s Office.

A student-led Twitter account associated with Pelion Panthers athletics identified the student as Marcus Dwyer, a popular student-athlete.

Grief counselors are at Pelion High School to help students through this incident.

Lexington School District 1 released the following statement, saying:

The Pelion High School community was saddened to learn of the death of one of its 12th-grade students, Marcus Dwyer.

Although the Pelion High staff and students are grieving, they are trying to keep the school day as normal as possible.

District counselors and school psychologists arrived at the school early this morning to help students and staff deal with their loss.

During the day, they will watch students carefully, listen to their comments, answer general questions and look for signs of distress. If those counselors have any concerns about how a student is handling this, they will contact the student’s parent directly.

Lexington School District 1

The Orangeburg County Sheriff’s Office also released a statement, saying:

It’s been a difficult weekend for all involved. We pray for this family at the loss of so promising a young man. He was set to graduate in a few weeks, popular in school and had only planned for a day of fun at the river that turned tragic. We ask all to pray for this family. At this time, the Orangeburg County Sheriff’s investigators have found no evidence indicating foul play in the case of this unfortunate incident. While the investigation is ongoing, we do not suspect foul play at this time.

Orangeburg County Sheriff's Office spokesperson Richard Walker

Check back for more updates.

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