Child who died at Big South Fork was a "bright student," teacher says

By  | 

ONEIDA, Tenn. (WVLT) -- A Scott County teacher identified the body of a child recovered from the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, park officials say.

Ryelin Acres / Source: Hannah King

WVLT News spoke to the child's former teacher, Hannah King, who confirmed that the child was 10-year-old Ryelin Acres.

King said Ryelin was "a bright student" who "loved the outdoors." King said this is her second student to die in two years, the other was a seventh grade girl who died in an ATV accident.

BSFNP Superintendent Nikki Nicolas said Ryelin's body was recovered at around 10:45 a.m. on July 10.

Nicolas said the search for Ryelin Acres began at 4:30 p.m. on July 9. Crews said he was reportedly swimming in White Oak Creek, which feeds into the Big South Fork of the Cumberland River, when the incident happened.

A release from the park said the search area for the boy's body was a 20-foot deep area oft the creek with a swift current through boulders with low water visibility due to recent rainfall.

Officials said the investigation is ongoing.

The release said the National Park Service, the Scott County Sheriff's Department, Scott County Rescue Squad, Scott County Emergency Management Office, South McCreary Fire Department, West McCreary Fire Department, Whitley City Fire Department, Cumberland County Rescue Squad, Rapid Response Services and the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency assisted in the search efforts.

Copyright 2019 WVLT. All rights reserved.