Family mourns after drowning in Appomattox River

Family mourns after drowns in Appomattox River

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) - Chesterfield County Police and the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries are conducting a death investigation after a man drowned in the Appomattox River Saturday.

The family of the victim identified the man as 23-year-old old Brandon Barfield.

“Being on the phone with his mother, and his friends talked to the whole way here,” said father Bobby Barfield, choking up. He was two hours away from home when he got the news and instantly drove back.

Rescue crews responded to the dam at Lake Chesdin to the Appomattox River for a person underwater, around 2:53 p.m.

”He was with his friends just up on the Appomattox river, they were all going canoeing and fishing,” Barfield said, “They came across an individual that was in distress, so they got out to help the individual, an elderly gentleman, and they were making their way to him. Brandon fell and got sucked in the undertow.”

Barfield says Brandon’s friends tried to pull him out of the water but weren’t able to. His body eventually washed up, and his friends started CPR.

He says he and his wife take solace in the fact that their son died a hero.

”It meant a lot to me and his mother that he was there trying to do a good deed for somebody else, and that helped us with closure.”

Regardless, planning funeral arrangements as the Barfield’s’ were doing today, is a pain that no parent should ever have to endure.

“Hold your loved ones. Hold your children tight, because tomorrow is not promised...” Barfield added.

Barfield says that Brandon was the eldest of 6 kids, and was on his way to becoming a welder.

Investigators say that the incident appears to be accidental but it will be treated as a death investigation.

This is a developing story.

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