Local News

Search Continues for Missing Fishermen

Posted Updated

CORINTH, NC — June 29,. 1996, 10:41 a.m.EDT

Rescue teams are out searching for a man and a teenager, who had been fishing in Shearon Harris Lake Friday. They are thought to have drowned. The only known witness is a frightened 3-year-old child named Coby Jacobs.

A fisherman in another boat found the boy sitting in a boat Friday afternoon. He was unharmed, and seemed to be in fairly good shape after drinking water and soda.

The adult is the Coby's father; the teenager is the man's nephew and the Coby's cousin.

Deputy Fire Chief Mark Riggsbee and his crew had a hard time establishing basic facts, such as how long the child had been on the lake. Riggsbee's best guess was that the child had been floating in the boat for more than six hours, since about 7:30 a.m. They believe the three had been camping for several days at lakeside and fishing during the daylight hours.

"Like any 3-year-old, they're afraid, they're scared," Riggsbee said. The boy wouldn't talk to officers, nor provide his name. Rescuers found an ID in the boat and asked the child if that was his father's name. He said it was.

A search turned up nothing by Friday night. The abandoned boat had drifted into some vegetation in a cove. The cove is 4 feet deep at its edge, but drops off to at least 15 feet. Authorities are trying to estimate the amount of drift the boat may have experienced.

Social service workers took the boy to Pittsboro where he was reunited with his mother late in the afternoon. They then returned to the lake to help the rescue effort.

The missing pair are thought to be from Pembroke in Robeson County.

Harris Lake is the reservoir for the Shearon Harris nuclear plant in southwestern Wake County

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