I sadly relay the latest news on our friend Joel to you.
Taken from the Atlanta Journal Constitution (AJC)
written by Christian Boone
Newnan father presumably drowns while saving son
A Newnan father of two saved his 10-year-old son’s life but apparently lost his own while on vacation over the weekend in Wyoming’s Snake River Canyon.
When asked if Fegarido saved Joey’s life, Lincoln County, Wyo., Sheriff Shane Johnson told the AJC, “I think that’s very possible.” According to witnesses, the boy was struggling to stay afloat amid the rapids.
“Neither had life jackets on, and that may have made the difference,” Johnson said.
Rescue crews had been searching for Fegarido since he went missing, but Johnson said their mission is now focused on recovery.
“We’re still searching, but we’re comfortable in concluding that he’s no longer on the site,” the sheriff said, noting that the volunteer rescue team included a helicopter and watercraft.
Fegarido’s pastor, Dave Ketelsen, said friends and family are holding onto slim hopes that he’s still alive.
“We know it’s very, very unlikely, but we’re praying Joel will turn up,” Ketelsen told the AJC. Fegarido is an active member of Peachtree City Seventh Day Adventist Church, “always eager to help someone out,” his pastor said. “If anyone had to move, he’d be there with his truck. You wouldn’t have to ask.”
Besides his son, Joey, Fegarido and wife Eva have a 7-year-old daughter, Jamie.
The only thing I will add to that is that Joel was fishing – while his kids were playing along the edge of the river. That is why they didn’t have a life vests on. They were not out in the water. Until he saw that Joey had wadded out too far and was in trouble, of course, then he just jumped in after him.
They still have not located him.
His wife is home and trying to sort everything out. She has been very stoic, calm and tries to tell all of us that she will be okay. She is however very concerned for little Joey. He feels that he is to blame for his fathers disappearance. Poor boy. He has a rough road ahead of him. He needs to be covered in prayer. His daddy was a hero to him long before this even happened. They were very, very close.
After putting together a meal for them we have found out that she is inundated with food. Joel’s coworkers, neighbors etc… have all been bringing food over. She asked that we do gift cards to local restaurants and grocery stores instead. That way it won’t need refrigeration and can be used as needed. Good thinking for a lady under so much stress. She actually is an incredible woman. An ER nurse. (That might explain the stoic demeanor.)
We are so very saddened.
I do ask that you keep praying for the family. They need to get Joel back home – either way – he needs to come home. Pray that they find him soon.
Thank you to those of you who have left comments, called and emailed me.
We hurt for our friends.