August 3rd, 2010
01:01 AM ET

Six teens drown in Louisiana river

Six teens drowned after they waded into unfamiliar waters and fell into a deeper part of the Red River in Shreveport, Louisiana, officials said.

One additional member of the group was rescued, Shreveport Assistant Fire Chief Fred Sanders told CNN.

He said no one in the group of teens, who ranged in age from 13 to 18, could swim.

The victims were part of two families, and three of the victims were brothers, he said.

Divers on scene said the river bed drops from a shallow area to 20 feet, Sanders said.

People nearby heard the teens screaming for help, CNN affiliate KSLA reported.

Local ministers were in the area counseling grief-stricken family members Monday evening, KSLA said.

"Please lift this family up in prayer," Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover told KSLA.

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Filed under: Louisiana • U.S.
soundoff (481 Responses)
  1. Jen

    How sad! I feel so horrible for these families. But I must ask... if you can't swim, and no one WITH you can swim, why are you anywhere NEAR a river?

    August 3, 2010 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  2. Chuck

    My heart goes out to these children and their parents. In our city, years ago they had numerous drownings every summer. Our civic and corporate leaders pulled together and built 15 city pools to keep this kind of tragedy from happening. People are not always given the opportunity that others recieve such as swimming lessons. Believe it or not some areas of the country don't even have a pool within many miles for kids to cool off and relax. The bitter comments on here I'm sure are from white, christians, of which I am no longer surprised. Amazing now days how many wolves are hiding in sheeps clothing.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  3. Not 4 Nothing

    Can you imagine being a parent and watching your children drown? All of them? Think about this for a minute before you post garbage. Thoughts and prayers with the families. This should be a wake up call to parents that don't know how to swim to set an example for their children and learn. They can then teach their children, it shouldn't matter what color you are. I live in NY and we just had a 4 year old girl drown in the family pool in their own backyard. We need to teach our children the skills they need to survive in their environment, and if the environment includes bodies of water then swimming should be considered a survival skill.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
  4. BTown

    The VGB Pool and Spa Safety Act has forced many public pools to closed down and many others to raise their pool rates. In my opion the VGB Pool and Spa Safety Act will increase the number of drowning due to kids swimming in unsupervised waters and will make it harder for families to access swimming lessons.

    FYI: For those who don't know the Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act required just about every public pool in the country to make changes to reduce the entrapment risk posed by the pool filtration system – REGARDLESS of how much of an entrapment risk the pool actually posed.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  5. Chris

    This is a failure of parenting plain and simple. Not because they failed to teach their kids how to swim, rather because they failed to teach their kids common sense.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  6. Butch71

    I read a lot of posters on here advocating that the schools should have taught these children to swim. It is never the responsibility of the schools to do ANYTHING. It is the parents responsibility to do EVERYTHING. Too many in our society expect the public sector to keep them safe and provide everything they need in life to survive. WRONG.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
  7. UnPhAzEd

    This is a parental issue. Poor parenting skills; bottom line!

    August 3, 2010 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Jennie

      I have to agree. As a parent why would you take your children whom don't know how to swim to any body of water (lake, river, pool) without having them wear life jackets? They are like six dollars at sporting good stores and could have saved these kids lives....

      August 3, 2010 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Compassionate

    I don't know if this concept was thought of, but I've heard of instances where really skilled swimmers have drowned. I don't know how to swim and have waded in the water. It was a sinkhole, these kids tragically drowned while wading in the water. When I first heard of this story I literally had to sit down, it took my breath away. Not once did I think to call anyone stupid. What is wrong with those of you wanting to point blame? This is a tragic accident and tears have and should be shed.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
    • WOW

      I agree Compassionate...&&& for those who have chosen to blame the parents...

      You all should feel vindicated by thinking of how much pain they felt as they watch their children die, to scream for help and not be able to help.. and watched their lifeless bodies being pulled from the water one by one placed in a body bag and then at some point presented to them for burial. You want to punish some more...they lost (3) kid(s) of their own at one time!

      So suffered they did as they watched their children drown and not be able to help and the shame is that some of you don't think this was enough!

      So now...does the acknowledgement from someone make you all feel better now! BUNCH DUMBAS%E%%!

      August 3, 2010 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  9. CauseISaidSo

    No loss. Now they can't infect the gene pool.

    August 3, 2010 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • US NAVY Man

      They don't have to . You and your kind already did

      August 4, 2010 at 9:03 am | Report abuse |
  10. Steve

    Nowhere in this article did it state the kids were black so why all the talk about black people not being able to swim?

    August 3, 2010 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Texan

      You obviously did not see a picture with the article

      August 3, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Stinky

    I blame Bush! It works for everything else.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  12. DHood

    Too bad you can't use food stamps for swimming lessons!!

    August 3, 2010 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • SlapHappy


      August 3, 2010 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  13. Darwin

    What 13-18 year old doesn't know how to swim? Pathetic.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
  14. Abigail

    CNN's coverage of this story is dreadful; they really dropped the ball. Yahoo has a far more complete news story on this sad event. This was a large family picnic outing (with parents and other adults) and the teens did not know how to swim, but went into the water anyway. Sadly, this horrible and tragic event outlines the necessity for everyone to learn how to swim. The adults must bear responsibility for these deaths due to negligence, lack of common sense, and lack of flotation devices. If you know you cannot swim, do not go into the water. If you never taught your children to swim, do not let them in the water! My sincere sympathies to this family, but learning to swim is an essential skill: reading, writing, walking, swimming.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
  15. Tiffanie

    What the heck happend here?
    First, why on earth are kids that can't swim going in water unsupervised? It only takes 2 inches of water to drown folks!
    Second, how did all of them end up drowning? were they tied together or something?

    August 3, 2010 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
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