Victim in Alderson drowning investigation identified - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Victim in Alderson drowning investigation identified

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3 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017 UPDATE:

Police in Alderson have released new details in an investigation into a drowning on the Greenbrier River.  The victim, 52-year-old Johnny Bragg of Fayette County was apparently searching for bait on the river with a group of people.  The group he was with realized he was missing when he did not meet with them at the end of the day.  

Alderson Police Chief Jeremy Bennett said first responders arrived on the scene within minutes.  They were able to find him along one of the islands, but were not able to reach the body initially due to the terrain.

"We actually used the police department's HMMWV (HUMMVEE) to actually cross the river to the island, reach him, and then load him and bring him out to a waiting ambulance," said Bennett.

The cause of death has not yet been determined.  EMTs believe it could be related to a medical condition.  This is the second drowning in Alderson over the summer of 2017.


ORIGINAL STORY: Emergency responders were called to the scene of a possible drowning in the area of Alderson, WV on Wednesday, Aug. 9, 2017.  Crews were called out at around 2:51 p.m.  It happened in the Greenbrier River.

According to investigators, the victim is a 52-year-old man.  There is no word on the victim's identity at this time.  Details on what led to the man's death are still being investigated by the Alderson Police and the Office of the State Medical Examiner.  

Police said they had to use the HMMWV "Special Response Vehicle" to drive into the river in order to retrieve the body.  Crews from the Alderson Fire Department and the Tri-County Fire Department assisted with the recovery efforts.

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