Missing woman's body recovered at Cummins Falls - WSMV Channel 4

Missing woman's body recovered at Cummins Falls

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Peggy McDaniel went missing at Cummins Falls on Wednesday. (WSMV) Peggy McDaniel went missing at Cummins Falls on Wednesday. (WSMV)
COOKEVILLE, TN (WSMV) -

The body of a woman who went missing at Cummins Falls State Park was recovered Friday afternoon.

Peggy McDaniel, 73, went missing Wednesday after water rose quickly, trapping dozens of people.

Jackson County officials and McDaniel’s family made the announcement at a press conference Friday evening.

Rescuers spotted McDaniel's body just after 2 p.m. They recovered her body about two hours later. The effort required 20 rescuers wading on foot.

McDaniel's son Shane Paschall said it was a day he'll never forget.

"It started out as a beautiful day, out here with my wife and four kids and my mother. As we got to the waterfall, it was still perfect. And just with a surge of water, an act of God, it turned tragic," Paschall said.

Officials said some 50 rangers from throughout Tennessee came to Jackson County to help, many on their day off.

"We really want to say thank you to all the rangers," Paschall said. "They bonded with us, talked with us, cried with us. They all searched for our mother like it was their own."

"We just like to take the time to tell everybody how much our mother was loved through our community," said Julie Taylor, McDaniel's daughter. "I've never met a more spry woman in my life. She was gritty. She outworked me and Shane both."

Thursday, the body of Lisa Michelle Tufts-Hillian was also found at Cummins Falls. Officials said she had heard about the search for McDaniel and wanted to help. Click here to read more.

Park officials announced Cummins Falls will reopen to the public on Saturday.

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