Search continues for 9-year-old boy missing in Duck River - WSMV News 4

Search continues for 9-year-old boy missing in Duck River

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Multiple crews were on the scene Tuesday night. (WSMV) Multiple crews were on the scene Tuesday night. (WSMV)
Dreyton Sims, 9, went missing in the Duck River. (Source: Family photo) Dreyton Sims, 9, went missing in the Duck River. (Source: Family photo)

The search for a 9-year-old boy who was swept away by the Duck River in Bedford County on Tuesday is now being called a recovery mission.

The family of Dreyton Sims is still waiting for answers more than a day after he went missing.

"We've been dealing with the father and the mother, and what we tell them is that I'm a father myself and we're going to do everything we can to find their child," said Bedford County EMA Director Scott Johnson. "Because it's not just a job, it's our passion."

Bedford County officials resumed their rescue efforts around 8 a.m. Wednesday, searching the river by boat. They focused most of their efforts about a half-mile downstream. The depth of the river in that area varies from 2 to 15 feet.

Officials said they are using sonar equipment and flat-bottom boats to search for any sign of Dreyton.

Dreyton's family said he was swimming in the Duck River with his 11-year-old brother on Tuesday afternoon when the strong current swept them away.

The 11-year-old boy was rescued, but they couldn't get to Dreyton, who was reportedly not wearing his life vest.

Dreyton was last seen going downstream around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday. At the time, he was wearing khaki shorts and white and black shoes.

On Wednesday morning, volunteers showed up to support the family, including Nicki Rhodes, who said she used to bring her own kids to the river to swim but stopped because the current has been too fast.

"I have a 9-year-old at home, you know. If it was my son, I would want everyone out here, so that's why I'm here because I want to help the family find him," Rhodes said.

Officials suspended the search Tuesday night due to darkness and dangerous waters, but some family members and friends searched all night.

Search and rescue crews said Wednesday they were still battling dangerous currents and the river had risen at least a foot in a few hours time.

A family friend said Dreyton and his brother frequently swam in the area. She said Dreyton learned how to swim about a year ago.

The Bedford County Sheriff’s Office, Bedford County EMA, and Shelbyville police and fire have all been assisting with the search.

A candlelight vigil for Dreyton was held at 7 p.m. Wednesday at the old Regions Bank parking lot near the bridge.

Stay with Channel 4 and for updates to this story.

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