Update: Authorities identify the man who drowned over the weekend

By: Staff Email
By: Staff Email

News 12 @ 11 o'clock/ Saturday, June 28, 2014

NORTH AUGUSTA, SC
(WRDW) --

We now know the name of the man who drowned in the Savannah River. Thirty-three-year-old Toyian Williams was fishing with a friend off of River Oak Drive when he slipped in the water. The water was running pretty high and pretty fast. Neighbors over there say they try to avoid the water because it's known for being dangerous, but they say visitors aren't familiar enough with it.

Buff Waters wasn't surprised this afternoon when he saw North Augusta Public Safety cars had swarmed his street. He's lived on Indian Rock Drive for almost thirty years now, and says something like this happens almost every year. "I've seen everything from people jumping out of trees and getting injured to almost drowning, even if you are familiar with it," he said.

And folks who live in this neighborhood say Toyian Williams had been fishing out on the water with a friend before. But Sgt. Maurice Ransom with North Augusta Public Safety said, this time, things went wrong. Public Safety received a call from Williams' friend around two o'clock this afternoon. "He lost his footing and fell into the water. He tried to retrieve him but was unable to," Sgt. Ransom said.

North Augusta Public safety led the search for Williams along with South Carolina DNR and Augusta Fire and Rescue. Augusta divers found Williams about 18 feet away from where he reportedly fell about three hours before, Ransom says the fast current pushed him away. "It's very dangerous, sometimes we underestimate the strength and speed of the current," he said.

Ransom says incidents like this are all too common, especially around this time of year. "It's always a tragic incident when this happens and we just hope with the holiday coming up people will exercise caution when they're in the water whether they're fishing or boating or what not," he said.

A warning Buff says you should take to heart. "If you don't have the respect for the water that you need to have, it will hurt you I guarantee it," he said.

Neighbors told me that whenever Toyian came out there to fish before, he was always very nice and well spoken, and they're sad to see this happen.

The autopsy will take place tomorrow in Newberry, South Carolina. They will be doing a toxicology report, but foul play is not suspected.


Saturday, June 28, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW) -- The Aiken County Coroner has identified the man who drowned in the Savannah River.

According to officials, Toyian R. Williams, 33, from North Augusta slipped on rocks in the river and fell into the water around 1:45 this afternoon.

A man , who was fishing with Williams, jumped in the water to try and help save him but got fatigued and had to go back to shore.

The Richmond County Dive Team recovered his body from the river around 5:00.

The Richmond County Dive Team, North Augusta Public Safety and South Carolina DNR are all working together. The drowning happened around the River Oak Drive area of the river in North Augusta.

An autopsy is scheduled for tomorrow in Newberry, S.C.


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