Local News

Hope Mills vet drowns in Harris Lake

Posted May 4, 2016

Emergency crews were called to Shearon Harris Reservoir Wednesday morning to search for a missing person.

— A retired Army staff sergeant drowned Wednesday morning in the Shearon Harris Reservoir, Chatham County officials said.

Dale Justus, 60, of Hope Mills, was fishing with a friend when he fell out of a boat while trying to drop an anchor in the water.

"He lost his footing somehow and fell overboard," said Debra Henzey, Chatham County community relations director.

Henzey said Justus' friend tried to pull him back into the boat and even jumped into the water to help him but was unsuccessful.

"The gentleman who was with him is just tremendously upset," Henzey said.


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  • Scott Householder May 5, 2016
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    Life jackets and throw cushions, people. It's good to carry extra of both.

  • Janet Ghumri May 4, 2016
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    Wow, the first week of May and there's been about 6 drownings already! I hope this trend doesn't continue. Losing lives like this is such a waste, and preventable.