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Body of 38-year-old swimmer found in North Myrtle Beach after hours-long search

NORTH MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – Officials in North Myrtle Beach confirmed the body of a swimmer was found after an hours-long search late Thursday.

North Myrtle Beach Fire Rescue said its crews and the North Myrtle Beach Police Department were called to 405 South Ocean Boulevard at around 7:30 p.m. after reports of a swimmer in distress.

The department said as crews arrived at the scene, a female swimmer had been pulled from the water and semi-responsive and breathing. First responders were also told another swimmer, later identified as a 44-year-old man, was still missing in the water. The woman was taken to the emergency room as a precautionary measure.

The Horry County Coroner released the identity of the man Friday afternoon. They said 44-year-old Antwan Jones was in Myrtle Beach on vacation from Indianapolis, Indiana when his family called 911 as Jones was in distress in the water and unable to get to shore.

Coroner Tamara Willard confirmed the cause of death to be asphyxiation due to drowning.

A viewer-submitted video shows crews out in and above the water searching in the dark for Jones around 9 p.m. Thursday night.

CREDIT: John Wayne Wayne Puczylowski
Body of 38-year-old swimmer found in North Myrtle Beach after hours-long search

After a search that included the use of drones with searchlights and thermal imaging, officials said Jones was found at around 10 p.m. nearly four blocks south of where he was previously last seen.

North Myrtle Beach Ocean Rescue, Horry County Fire Rescue, North Myrtle Beach Rescue Squad, the Horry County Police Department, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Coast Guard were among other agencies assisting at the scene. Officials said the Myrtle Beach Fire Department had rescue swimmers en route.

“We appreciate the work and effort by our city personnel and our local agencies that assisted with this operation,” North Myrtle Beach Fire Rescue said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family on the loss of their loved one. No further information will be released regarding those involved. That information will be released by the coroner’s office once all proper notifications have been made.”

Stay with WMBF News for updates.


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