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Official: Winterville man's drowning death a 'tragic accident'

Quincy Bradford

By Joe Johnson

The man who died over the weekend while fishing in an Oglethorpe County pond was the victim of a “tragic accident,” according to Oglethorpe County Coroner N. Howard Sanders.

Sanders said that 37-year-old Quincy Bradford of Winterville was fishing in the pond off Water Works Drive in Crawford Saturday afternoon when the small boat he was in “just capsized.”

The water was calm but frigid, and Sanders said that Bradford did not know how to swim.

A female friend who watched the tragedy unfold from the shore of the large farm pond called 911 and within three minutes county public safety personnel arrived on the scene and were in the water searching, according to the sheriff’s office.

However, it soon became apparent that the incident would require additional resources when emergency responders realized that it was going to be a recovery mission rather than a rescue effort, the sheriff’s office said.

Elbert and Hart counties sent divers and the state Department of Natural Resources responded with equipment and personnel.

Bradford’s body was recovered approximately 2 hours and 40 minutes after the 911 call.

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