7-year-old among 2 missing, 14-year-old among 3 dead after family tubing on Dan River goes over dam in Rockingham County

Piedmont Triad News

EDEN, N.C, (WGHP) — Rockingham County officials have identified the family members who went over the Duke Energy dam while tubing on the Dan River.

Nine family members went tubing on the Dan River around 7:30 p.m. Wednesday night, just before dark. At some point, the tubes went over a Duke Energy dam in Eden.

Four people were rescued, three died and their bodies were recovered from the river, and two are still missing.

The bodies recovered were those of Bridish Crawford, 27, of Eden, Antonio Ramon, 30, of Eden, and Sophie Wilson, 14, of La Porte, Indiana.

Teresa Villano, 35, of Eden, and Isiah Crawford, 7, of Eden, are still missing.

Teresa Villano and Isiah Crawford

Those rescued were Rueben Villano, 35, of Eden, Eric Villano, 14, of Eden, Irene Villano, 18, of Eden, and Karlos Villano, 14, of La Porte, Indiana.

Rockingham County Emergency Services Director Rodney Cates says he believes the people on the tubes didn’t have a way to call for help, which caused the delay in rescue efforts.

Shortly after 3 p.m. Thursday, a Duke Energy employee spotted four of the nine people at the bottom of the dam and called for rescue services. Duke Energy says the employee was just doing the right thing and trying to get help for the individuals.

The Duke Energy dam is about an eight foot drop, according to Rockingham County Sheriff Sam Page.

Duke Energy reports that it is not a hydroelectric dam and does not have turbines. It’s a smaller impoundment dam.

Cates does not know if any of the victims were wearing life jackets, and they are working to find out if the tubes were rented or owned by the family.

Crews will continue to search for the two missing people on Friday and will search Saturday as well, but will not use aircraft in the search on Saturday.

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