Search Crews Recover Second Body from Pascagoula River

Search Crews Recover Second Body from Pascagoula River

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Authorities have located the body of 18-year-old Brandon Rich. The Pascagoula High School Senior was discovered under a barge around 4:00pm Monday afternoon - about 100 yards from where the boogy-boarding accident happened. 15-year-old Caleb Sweeten's body was recovered from the river Sunday afternoon.

Family members of Rich were seen hugging, crying and consoling each other Monday morning down at the boat launch, while search crews continued combing the Pascagoula River for any sign of the missing young man.

The 18-year-old football standout was out on a boat trip with Caleb Sweeten and a third friend Sunday afternoon, when something went terribly wrong.

"From what we understand they were out boogey-boarding behind the boat," said Jackson County Sheriff Mike Byrd. "One fell off, and the current is so strong because of all the rain we've had. The water is up, the river is high, and it's very hard to swim in those type conditions."

Search and rescue crews were out on the water all night underneath the U.S 90 bridge. They recovered 15-year-old Caleb Sweeten's body between a tug boat and the back of a barge. Authorities say Caleb was wearing a life jacket.

"It's hard, its absolutely tough," said Sheriff Byrd. "Because I know these kids. The whole community knows them. They were just great kids, and you just hate to see something like this happen."

Both Caleb and Brandon were heralded as popular kids at Pascagoula High School, where they excelled in several sports. Brandon Rich was set to graduate in just a couple of weeks, and had a football scholarship to Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.

"His family had already started preparing to get the things that he needed for school," said family member Angela Cooley. "Microwave, refrigerator, stuff like that. Everybody was just excited for Brandon being able to go off to school and his achievements."

A memorial service has been set up at the high school gym for Brandon and Caleb Wednesday night at 6:00pm.

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