Teen's Body Recovered From Lake

After a weeklong search, state game wardens say crews have recovered the body of a 17-year-old who disappeared with his grandfather during a fishing trip on Richland Chambers Reservoir.

Jerrod Rachel, of Malakoff, and his 72-year-old grandfather, Jerry King, were reported missing on March 24.  King's body was found last Friday. 

King’s pontoon boat was found lodged in standing timber near Hickey Island north of the U.S. Hwy 287 bridge on the 41,000-acre lake in Navarro County.

Capt. Gary Dugan of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department said lifejackets were found on board the boat, still wrapped in plastic. He speculates that one person may have fallen into the water and the other may have jumped in after him.

“Obviously, we’re relieved that we’ve found Jerrod and his family can start to get some closure on this,” Dugan said. “It’s a real tragedy. Here we have a case of a grandfather and grandson going fishing – one of the most wholesome family activities I can think of – and, somewhere along the way, and probably in a matter of seconds, it all went wrong.”

Dugan said the water temperature was around 55 to 60 degrees.

Game wardens continued searching Lake Lavon Wednesday, near Dallas, for Michael Simmons, 18, of Freeville, N.Y., and Lake Grapevine for Trevor Dennis Rotzoll, 26, of Grapevine. Simmons has been missing since his paddleboat capsized in high winds Tuesday, and Rotzoll has been missing since Saturday.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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