Jamal Keshawn Brinson, from Charlotte, jumped off a boat to retrieve an article of clothing in the water before drowning, officials said.
The incident happened at the Highway 50 Recreation Area in Wake Forest, near a boat ramp.
Emergency crews found his body on Sunday afternoon 11-feet below the surface of the lake.
Several witnesses told officials that Brinson entered the water earlier in the day and swam without an issue.
Officials used sonar techniques and dive teams to find the person.
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