Body recovered of boy drowned on trip to N.C.

June 29, 1996|By Alex Gordon | Alex Gordon,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

A trip to the Outer Banks beach in North Carolina ended tragically for 14-year-old Robert Foster, a foster child who drowned Wednesday while vacationing with the Baptist Home for Children and Families of Bethesda.

The youth was standing in waist-high water with friends on an unguarded beach when he was suddenly pulled out to sea by a rip current, said Chief Deputy Rodney Midgett of the Dare County Sheriff's Office.

Robert's body was recovered yesterday morning about one-quarter of a mile south of where he disappeared.

His friends tried to grab him, but the current was too strong, Midgett said. According to his friends, Robert could not swim.

Robert, initially reported as being from Baltimore, lived in Bethesda. Sheryl Chapman, executive director of the Baptist Home, said the drowning was the first accident on the home's annual vacations.

"The trip gives youngsters the real vacation they have never had," Chapman said. "This is just very devastating."

Midgett said that because several people witnessed the accident and provided consistent accounts, an autopsy might not be performed.

"There is not even a hint of foul play," he said. "Because the boy could not swim, once he was pulled off his feet by the current he was not able to help himself."

Pub Date: 6/29/96

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