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Teen Drowns At Little River Canyon

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FORT PAYNE, Ala. (WHNT) – A 19-year-old man drowned at Little River Canyon on Saturday evening.

The sheriff’s office tells WHNT News 19 the young man, Ricardo Perez, was from Rome, Georgia.  He and some friends were visiting the area known as Martha’s Falls.

Perez and his friends apparently tried to swim across Little River.  His friends tried to help him but weren’t able to find him when he went under water.  People along the river called 911.

Fischer Rescue Squad divers found Perez’ body in nine feet of water just before 9 p.m. Saturday.

Several agencies helped with the effort, including the Fischer Rescue Squad, Adamsburg Volunteer Fire Department, DeKalb Ambulance Service, DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office, and Little River Canyon National Preserve Park Ranger, Cherokee County Rescue Squad and Alabama State Troopers.

Little River Canyon Superintendent Gail Bishop said this is the first drowning accident in 2013, but there have been four rescues in the river corridor this year.  The National Park Service warns people not to cross the Little River because the water is too strong.