Man drowns in river, family warns others to not swim - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Man drowns in river, family warns others to not swim

By Katherine Kington -  bioemail

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -  With temperatures rising well above average for this time of year, many are flocking to the Chattahoochee River to cool down but Emily Brookins who just lost her dad to the river says although it may look beautiful it has a mind of its own.

"Don't even try it, like I said that type of water may look calm but it has a strange undercurrent and it will take you. Don't go in without being in a boat."

Columbus Water Warden, Roger Martin, says "It may look very docile on the top and it can be an undercurrent at the same time, just like in an ocean."

 He adds, many underestimate the power of rivers and especially the Chattahoochee which is the largest flowing river in Georgia. "We're actually on the fall line habitat. For about 30 miles the river falls over 300 feet and as the river falls, that water moves rapidly."

43 year old Steve Brookins lost his life Saturday to the river he thought of as his second home.

Brookins grew up on this river, later sharing it with his children, but for Emily Brookins, she'll never look at it the same.

"It's bittersweet, I have a lot of memories with my dad on that river, he took me fishing, he taught me how to fish on that river."

That river that once held many laughs will never hold a Brookins again. "I've swam in that river a long time ago but I definitely wouldn't now you know and me being grown I would never let my kids do it."

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