SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The search resumed Wednesday for a 9-year-old boy who went missing on the Duck River in Shelbyville on the Fourth of July.
Identified by his mother as Dreyton Sims, the boy and his brother were both swept away by a current sometime late Tuesday afternoon near Fisherman’s Park.
His brother was pulled to safety by a good Samaritan a short time later, but Dreyton couldn’t be found.
Sheriff Austin Swing confirmed Tuesday there was an active search until at least 8:40 p.m. when conditions worsened due to high waters and limited visibility.
The search resumed Wednesday and officials held a press conference at 4 p.m., announcing the rescue has become a recovery effort as Dreyton had yet to be found.
Dreyton’s mother stood near the river most of the afternoon and family members tried to provide comfort to her as she waited for any update from emergency responders.
She didn’t want to talk on-camera, but Dreyton’s uncle spoke on behalf of the family.
He said his nephew often played at the river with his older brother
“They love it. They love swimming around catching the fish, throwing rocks in the water, but it’s not over yet,” said Monsanto Cannon.
Cannon told News 2 that his nephew knew how to swim but the current took him under.
The family says they are grateful to all emergency workers and volunteers looking for Dreyton.
“It is dangerous even with us standing out here today, but you know they are putting their life on the line to do their job for my little nephew,” Cannon said.
Multiple teams from neighboring counties aided in the search Wednesday with around 30 people, four boats, and sophisticated sonar technology.
Officials said their search has been halted multiple times due to the weather conditions, which they explained have gotten much worse with the the water levels rising rapidly, around 2 feet, over the past day.
“The water is running very, very fast, so it makes it very difficult to conduct this operation,” said Scott Johnson with the Bedford County EMA, who noted they’re searching as weather permits.
Officials said the 9-year-old was last seen wearing khaki shorts with black and white Nike Air Jordan sneakers.