SAN ANGELO, TX — At about 4 p.m. Sunday, a 9-1-1 call was made from the Ben Ficklin area near the dam. Someone had drowned, the caller told dispatchers.
At the rec area near the Ben Ficklin Reservoir, police said three friends were swimming across the water near the dam. In the process of swimming across, the friends determined they had swam too far. When two of the friends turned around, they saw their third friend face down in the water.
Bystanders helped get the drowning victim to shore, police said. As soon as they did, the San Angelo Fire Department’s medics arrived at 4:12 p.m. But it was too late. The victim died on the shore.
Where the incident happened:
Next-of-kin have not been notified as of 6 p.m. Sunday, so we are withholding sex, age and other circumstances from this tragic incident that may identify the victim.
The Ben Ficklin Reservoir is on the S. Concho River near S. Bryant Blvd./U.S. 87 in south San Angelo and is formed by a small dam. There is a popular recreation park on the shoreline there. From here, the S. Concho River flows northward towards the water treatment plant.
Update 8:15 p.m.
San Angelo police said the victim was a 21-year-old man. Police are calling the incident an apparent drowning, however, Justice of the Peace Fred Buck, who pronounced the man dead, ordered an autopsy. The victim was at the park near the Ben Ficklin Reservoir celebrating his 21st birthday with friends, witnesses at the scene said. Police withheld identifying information of the victim until the next-of-kin was notified. His name was not released, however.
Update May 14, 3:40 p.m.
Police released the identity of the drowning victim. The 21-year-old victim was identified as San Angelo resident Damien King.