Madison-Rockingham Rescue Squad working to get new equipment

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ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, N.C.-- It’s been more than one year since Lois Line has seen her son Jacob.

“There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about him,” Line said.

Jacob Line, 27, and his friend James Bohensteil, 44, drowned during a fishing trip at Belews Lake in April 2014.

Jacob’s body wasn’t found for 65 days.

“That was quite a long time for our families to wait,” Line said. “It was just agonizing to wake up every day and try to do normal things knowing that he’s in the lake.”

Line said that long wait may have been avoided if local rescue teams had high-tech equipment to search the lake sooner.

“It would have probably saved us all some heartache,” said the mother.

Heartache Line and the family of James Bohensteil are trying to prevent other families from feeling.

Since last summer, both families have raised about $5,000 in total to try to help the Madison-Rockingham Rescue Squad purchase a Sea Scan ARC Explorer, high-definition sonar equipment.  

“The side scan sonar can take pictures of up to 300 feet wide so it is able to scan a large area,” said Rusty Gray, Chief of the squad.

Through the families’ help and federal grants, the rescue squad has raised $20,000 -- half of the equipment’s $40,000 price tag.

A piece of gear rescuers say could save time during search and rescues.  

“It would help to reduce the recovery time taking it from weeks and days to hopefully just hours,” Gray said.

“This would help another family not to have to go through this,” Line said.