Family remembers Ocean Isle Beach parasailing victim

Reported by Gavin Johnson - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

OCEAN ISLE BEACH, NC (WECT) - Two women died in a parasailing accident last Friday, and now a family member is talking about the vacation that turned into a tragedy.

According to witnesses, the wind picked up, so the captain shifted into full throttle in effort to move the parachutes safely away from the shoreline.  They said that's when the cables snapped and the parachutes were pulled into an under draft and were caught under a pier.

Cynthia Woodcock, 60, of Kernersville and her childhood friend, Lorrie Shoup, 56, of Granby, Colorado died when a rope connecting the parasail to the boat disconnected.

"[Woodcock] didn't have a mean bone in her body," said Woodcock's cousin Tom Collins.  "She was a Collins though. We're adventurous. Fished a lot. We'd do a lot of things together as a family."

Although Woodcock was adventurous, Collins doesn't remember her ever parasailing.  He heard about the accident on the news Friday night, but had no idea it was his cousin.

"It was a little uncharacteristic of Cynthia," said Collins.  "I know she'd made statements when she turned 60, she wanted to try some new things."

He's not sure why the women were parasailing in the windy weather conditions, but he doesn't blame NC Watersports, who the women were parasailing with.

"I hate it for the company, they didn't deliberately do this - I know that," said Collins.  "They're in the business of making money. That's what their business is. That's why they have a business to make money. But we do have to look at all issues, and we have to do things safely."

According to the medical examiner, both women died when they hit the water.  One suffered a broken neck, the other a broken back.

Woodcock's funeral is Wednesday outside of Lenoir, NC.  THe US Coast Guard's Marine Safety Unit in Wilmington is investigating the accident.

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