A day of fun turned tragic at a murky lake in Lehigh Acres, Florida, when 17-year-old Elaundre Foster began having “trouble swimming and went under,” reported Wink News. At approximately 5 p.m. on Saturday, Foster and a group of friends went for a swim at a lake near the 2500 block of 15th Street West.
Shortly after their arrival, it was reported that the eleventh grader at Palm Acres Charter High School — whose friends said he wasn’t a strong swimmer — began having trouble swimming. One of the teens, Alyssa Ratz — who was at the scene — told reporters that they immediately tried to help Foster when he began having trouble.
Ratz said that they “told him to please hop on our backs and kick. We will get you to shore but he wasn’t corresponding.” Another teen, Dylan, who was in close proximity to the drowning teen, tried desperately to rescue him but it was to no avail. He watched as Foster took his last breath before he went under and drowned.
The murky water hindered the group of teens from locating Foster’s body. Therefore, they immediately notified police officials, who called for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to help search for the drowning victim. Nearly four hours later, at approximately at 8:45 p.m., the teen’s body was recovered from the lake, according to Fox 4 Now.
A woman, Carmen Vazquez, who lives near the lake, told reporters that she saw one of the teenage boys crying as he was making a phone call. “When she asked the teen what was going on, he said that his friend was downing.” Vazquez went on to say that “They looked like they were in shock, you know?”
— WINK News (@winknews) March 8, 2016
The teen’s girlfriend, Cheyenne, later arrived at the scene to collect his belongings, which were still in the truck he arrived in, and she told reporters that Foster was her “best friend and the person she loved.” She went on to say that before his drowning death, the pair were supposed to meet up Friday or Saturday, but sadly the day will never come. All she is left with are his haunting last words: “Never take nobody for granted because when God’s ready to take them he’s going to take them, and that’s the last thing he said to me.”
“He shouldn’t have died so young,” Cheyenne added. “He thought that he could pull through it because he’s a big person.”
Foster’s family were also stunned after learning that his body was pulled from the Florida lake, including his brother, Elaunte Foster, who said that he “used to swim with him all the time in the same very lake and we used to race there all the time so right now it’s pretty hard for me to believe that he’s gone.”
His mother, Larouna Pinckney-Maybin, stated that she “called him [her] little goofball. He was always witty and making people laugh. Everything in life was funny to him; he was always happy.”
“In his short life, he did it to the fullest. No matter what it was he gave (people) 100 percent of himself. He just loved people.”
Although Elaundre Foster’s drowning death was ruled an accident, his aunt wants more answers, but investigators say that since no foul play was suspected, the investigation is now over.
— The News-Press (@TheNewsPress) March 8, 2016
Elaundre’s aunt, Jessica Marshall, believes that Foster was a strong swimmer despite what his friends have stated, and she is “pressing for more information.” Marshall went on to say that “As a family we’re just devastated and we’re taking this loss very, very hard and we want answers, more answers than what we’ve been given.”
However, the drowning victim’s mother stated that she wanted to thank Foster’s friend, Dylan, for trying to rescue her son. She stated that “he almost sacrificed himself for my son. That to me, in itself, means at least he didn’t go alone. It could have been worse. He could have been out there by himself.”
[Photo via Christopher Furlong/Getty Images]