Lincoln County Coroner Tim Quarles identified the victims as 22-year-old Raven Powell of McDuffie County, 4-year-old Mason Powell, and 3-year-old Sawyer Powell, WRDW reported.
The coroner said the triple drowning likely happened sometime after 5 p.m. and that the bodies have been transferred over to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) crime lab for an autopsy.
Additional details about what exactly happened have not been released. The incident is being investigated by officials of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, and the GBI.
Lincoln County Sheriff Paul Reviere said the drowning happened in the Amity Recreation Area on Clarks Hill Lake, also known as Thurmond Lake. Officials received an emergency call around 9 p.m. about a possible triple drowning.
Pat Morgan, a member of the GBI, told WRDW that investigators haven’t ruled out foul play in the investigation at this time.
“We have not ruled out anything at this point,” Morgan said. “The autopsy will hopefully provide us with more information as well as the interviews and other investigative leads we are following.”
Michael Dollar, a neighbor of the Powell family started a fundraiser on GoFundMe following the June 23 incident.
“I’ve known Mike and his family my entire life,” Dollar wrote on the page, likely referring to the victims’ father. “He’s my lifelong neighbor and friend … Keep their family and friends in your thoughts and prayers.”
A family member of the siblings said the two young brothers were adventurous and loved playing in the water.
“Both boys were the happiest ever,” a cousin of the victims told WRDW. “You never seen [sic] them without a smile on their face unless they were hungry.”
The area is on the same arm of the lake where best friends Eynn Wilson and Edward Kirk drowned a little over a year ago while on a boating excursion with friends and family members.
Shontover Kirkland, 32, was charged with reckless conduct and involuntary manslaughter and just this week pleaded guilty in the case.