Classmates mourn 12th grade student who drowned near Lillington

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Hours after divers recovered the body of a missing 18-year-old swimmer from a lake near Lillington, his classmates honored the soon-to-be graduate.

Around 5:45 p.m. Monday, the Harnett County Sheriff’s Office said Justice Clark and three friends were swinging on a rope swing at the lake when they began calling for help.

“A group of kids standing over there screaming help! Help!” said witness Serena Brown.

ocals say the lake is an old gravel pit on Flyway Drive off Joe Collins Road near Hwy 421 that’s now filled with water. Swimming and fishing is prohibited, but many still do. The lake is shallow in some areas and deep in others.

“From my understanding he really couldn’t swim that well. They was swinging off a rope, cause they swing off the rope, then jump in,” said Taricka NeSmith.

Emergency crews recovered Clark’s body about two hours later.

See ABC 11

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Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, spare-time swimming aficionado. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

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