Local News

Body of Hope Mills teen recovered from Rockfish Creek

Posted June 20, 2013

— Divers recovered the body Thursday of a Hope Mills teenager who went missing while swimming in Rockfish Creek in Cumberland County on Wednesday.

Debbie Tanna, a spokeswoman for the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office, said shortly before 1 p.m. that 17-year-old Cameron Draughon was found about 50 feet from where he had been swimming with two other people Wednesday afternoon.

Draughon went under around 4:30 p.m. after he dropped a slice of pizza in the water and went to retrieve it, Tanna said.

Crews began searching under water and on creek banks but were forced to halt their search Wednesday evening because of darkness. They resumed searching the creek – 35 feet at its deepest point – around 8 a.m. Thursday and used sonar equipment to help see through water muddied by recent heavy rains.

Draughon was a rising senior at Gray's Creek High School.

His death is the second this month for Cumberland County authorities.

On June 6, crews found the body of 18-year-old Dustin Turner who, two days earlier, went under water in the Cape Fear River and never resurfaced.

His body was recovered three hours before he was set to graduate from Cape Fear High School.


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  • Obamacare forever Jun 21, 2013

    So why aren't the authorities treating this as a homicide? What were they really throwing at him, rocks?

  • hollylama Jun 21, 2013

    "I wonder, when did humanity stop thinking?"

    Around the same time comment sections became the norm.

  • cheekbecky Jun 21, 2013

    also if the team would have listened to a fellow member from the creek..he had told them where to look and it was the last place they looked and they found him right where the man said to look in the first place if they would have simply listened to someone who knows the creek they would have possibly saved or found the boys body the same day he went under.

  • cheekbecky Jun 21, 2013

    the pizza bit isnt true. a guy down there said there was no pizza no pizza box..i live down there myself. a store manager said the cops said it was foul play supposedly might have been unconscious before he hit the water. i dont know how true that is but it seems plausible considering the guy who told me said the boy was with 2 other boys alone and when he went back he said there was no pizza box nor any pizza laying around. I hope they find out what really happened to this poor boy. his family deserves the truth.

  • jackleg Jun 20, 2013

    Why go in after a slice of pizza? I can't imagine anyone eating wet pizza that fell into water that nasty looking. I really can't imagine anyone eating wet pizza period. Not worth dying for.

  • Obamacare forever Jun 20, 2013

    I too have questions about the pizza. I wish WRAL would investigate more into this.

  • rlee1117 Jun 20, 2013

    So sad!

  • Cock a doodle doo Jun 20, 2013

    "These comments astound me - one person ask why he went for a slice of pizza"

    I think that is a very valid point. While this is a very upsetting story, just from the other kids saying this bizarre statement, it makes one think more may be at play here. I am sure investigators will look into that. Who, even young boys, throw slices of pizza at each other, and who if anybody would dive under murky brown water to retrieve a slice of pizza. That story is as bizzare as this young man's life ending is sad.

  • vrigg45071 Jun 20, 2013

    Humanity takes a holiday to the "Monday Morning Quarterbacks" who have to put their spin on it. It's a tragedy. My thoughts and prayers to this young man's family and friends.

  • Conservative Jun 20, 2013

    Unfortunate and very tragic. My condolences to the family.