A Georgia teen has died in a bizarre shopping cart game. Authorities said 18-year-old Chance Werner drowned in Lake Allatoona on Saturday afternoon. When the teen’s body was found, he was still strapped to a shopping cart. Witnesses said the cart, and the boy, were propelled into the water during a game.
Werner and his friends were reportedly celebrating their high school graduation. Within hours after the ceremony, the Woodland High School graduates arrived at the lake for a fun-filled evening. Unfortunately, their celebration ended in tragedy.
Georgia Department of Natural Resources spokeswoman Melissa Cummings said the teens were playing a game, which involved an ordinary shopping cart. As reported by Huffington Post, Werner and his friends reportedly took turns riding inside the cart, which was secured to a tree. When the cart reached the end of the dock, it was expected to stop short and launch the rider into the lake.
At some point during the game, the rope was tied to Werner’s belt instead of a tree. Although the teen was over six-feet-tall, he was not strong enough to secure the cart. Rather than stopping at the end of the dock, the cart and the teen were launched into the lake. Werner was eventually dragged underwater by the weight of the cart.
As he failed to resurface, witnesses called 911. The Bartow County Sheriff’s Office and Bartow County Fire and Rescue responded to the scene. However, it was simply too late.
At 2:50 am Sunday morning, Chance Werner’s body was discovered approximately 30 feet below the surface. Although the exact details are unknown, Cummings confirmed the teen died during the shopping cart game.
In addition to being a recent high school graduate, Werner was the father of a seven-month-old boy. Werner’s father, Fred, admits that the teens may have been drinking. However, he is confused about the details surrounding the shopping cart game and his son’s death:
“It’s a tragic thing; that little time period where the rope got put onto him and where he got into the water is still a very gray area. We have no answers for that yet… With all these shows that are on cable and YouTube, I mean, you never know what’s going on.”
As reported by WSBTV News, Fred is unsure whether his son was acting on a dare. He is also unsure whether any witnesses attempted to help when it was clear Werner was drowning.
Chance Werner was in the process of celebrating his high school graduation when he died in the shopping cart game. Instead of planning for his future, his family is now in the process of planning his funeral.