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. Kathy

    Some of these remarks are so cruel! One day we will all meet our Maker... Good luck to all that have such a vicious and callous heart – you will need it!

    August 3, 2010 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  2. Chasaty

    There is no doubt among anyone that this is sad and tragic but, if for years people who don't know how to swim have been drowning, how about learning from those mistakes and learn how to swim before getting into the water or wearing a life jacket.

    As for the excuse of inner city youths not having access to a pool to learn......inner city youths become lawyers, entertainers, doctors, etc regardless of the substandard schools in their area. If you have the desire to do something, you can do it.

    As for everyone else, we can either learn from preventable accidents or just keep doing the same thing over and over. I pray for comfort of the families and friends of these youth. I pray for their comfort and for them to learn from this tragedy.

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

    What a tragedy! We can ill afford to lose our young people to senseless accidents like this. There may have been someone in that group that would have found a cure for a disease or invented something that revolutionized how we live, or touched the life of someone else special in this world.

    My deepest sympathies to the families. I cannot imagine the pain and abject sense of loss.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
  4. dave

    none of the teens or parnets could swim

    but I bet they could all play X Box

    August 3, 2010 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
    • BettaRecognize

      And I bet the could dance and play the he11 out of some dominoes !

      August 3, 2010 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
  5. Shiningat30

    It's disgusting to sit here and read all these comments. My heart and prayers go out to these families at this difficult time. It doesn't matter is person knows how to swim or not. Every post on here should be about sympathy for those kids and their parents.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Ms. S.

      I am so glad that you responded to the blogs the way that you did. Its not about lack of parenting skills as one blogger said or the fact that the teens could not swim. Instead it should be about the fact that these teens have passed and their families need condolences not criticism. Times like these, we as people should be on our knees praying for one another and not trying to criticize. Put yourself in these parents' shoes and just think about what they are going through. What if it was you? Would you rather read comments about your son not knowing how to swim or comments of condolences? Now is not the time for rude comments. Its time to send up prayers to OUR HEAVENLY FATHER for these teens and their families to keep the faith and know that the Lord puts no more on us than we can bear. My heart goes out to the family of each of the teens involved. You will be in my prayers. God Bless You and know that you have someone praying for you.

      August 3, 2010 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  6. Mary Anne

    God rest their souls. May God help these families through their pain. The river has always been known to be dangerous, but so is walking out the front door. We cannot live in fear. Just live life to its fullest.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  7. rocky

    Why the heck did the parents take a group of kids to a river, if they could not swim? This is a Darwin award winning group of parents. I will pray for the deceased, and hope that the parents get brought up on child endangerment/neglect, and are made to pay for their crime. No excuse for what they did!

    August 3, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • US NAVY Man

      You have to be from Shreveport to understand it connected to the downtown area. Its a nice area out there they have a park around the way, its not like a backyard thing or some out in the middle of nowhere spot to swim in the river with no one knowing how to swim. That crazy if you go downtown your closer to the water than you know.

      August 4, 2010 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
  8. John Lane

    Wading in shallow water, they could have easily slipped and fallen due to (a) slightly stronger current on their wading feet; (b) slipping / tripping on rocks or whatever on the riverbottom. If this happened right near a drop-off, ... you see what ensued.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  9. Melanie

    I think as parents all of us can look back at a time and wish we could take back a moment in time. My heart goes out to these families. To loose three children from one family is tragic let alone their friends. Many people die in rivers all over the country due to the lack of swimming skills. I think it is time swimming be taught for free to all children and family or for a low fee. When I was a child we all went to the local pool and learned. Compassion always seems to lack in times of tragedy. Maybe too painful to open ones heart. I believe as fellow humans...kind words are the only words that should be placed on these types of articles. Peace and prayers to all.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  10. Anonymous

    That is really weird. Where i live the Savanna River Runs besides the town And 3 teens were out there in shallow water playing around. THey did not know how to swim. They took a little steps away from their shallow spot to move to anther one but they fell into a 20 foot chasm in the river where the sand suddenly drops. One survived. It was really sad. Weird how both these things happened on or around the same date.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:21 am | Report abuse |
  11. DragonsBreath

    Its tragic but, come on, if I cant fly, I dont to jump off a building. If fire burns me, I dont walk through flames, if ICANT SWIM, I DONT GO INTO A RIVER. Just saying......

    August 3, 2010 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  12. kmo220

    My heart goes out to the families. This is just an awful tragedy. Anyone blaming the kids and parents – even expert swimmers can drown. How many parents take their children to wading pools when the children are toddlers and don't know how to swim? The children must have assumed the water would be shallow, until the ground dropped out underneath them. Even if one of them had know how to swim, this would probably have still happened. Trying to save a drowning person is very difficult; that's why lifeguards need to be in excellent shape. I am an expert swimmer, and it is frightening when you walk off drop-offs in rivers or ocean beds!

    August 3, 2010 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  13. mhigbe

    If there's something to be learned from this story, it's this: if you don't know how to swim, learn. If your kids can't swim, teach them. It doesn't have to be crazily expensive. There are programs out there specifically for low-income families. I've worked at one of them, and 90% of our kids were from below the poverty line.
    I've also taught swimming lessons to adults, and it's one of the most challenging things I've ever done. It's easy to get a 5 year old in the deep end with you; not so much a 50 year old with a lifetime of preconceived notions about the danger of water. People who overcome their fears and learn this essential skill as adults have all my respect.
    And if you can't swim, then you have no business being in water that's not contained in a bathtub.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  14. john

    Where was He when all this was about to happen? Maybe on break.

    August 3, 2010 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  15. Vrezh_Gabr

    I can understand one or two accidentally stepped into the deeper part, but six...I can't imagine ALL SIX would do it at the same time....Otherwise, if one or two were drowning, the rest should not get in if they could not for swimming, I come from places there were no pools there, but plenty of rivers and canals, I started to swim at age 7 or 8, as most my friends....Inner city kids problem is partly their parents...partly the street, partly the school and the result is not good. Personally in this country there should be plenty of opportunity to learn how to this particular tragedy I still don't get it how could SIX teenagers (not toddlers) drown ALL TOGETHER

    August 3, 2010 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
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