Rip current takes two lives near Oak Island pier

Two family members, a father and son, did not survive after getting stuck in a rip current near...
Two family members, a father and son, did not survive after getting stuck in a rip current near the pier
Published: Aug. 18, 2021 at 5:59 PM EDT

UPDATE: Town officials have released the names of the father and son who drowned in Oak Island last week.

According to Communications Manager Michael Scott Emory, the victims were Christopher Lewis Hawkins, 50, and Michael Christopher Hawkins, 28, both of Shelby.

OAK ISLAND, N.C. (WECT) - A rip current near Oak Island pier resulted in two family members losing their lives Wednesday afternoon.

The two family members who did not survive were a father and his son.

Oak Island Police Department responded to a call around 1:45 p.m. Wednesday about two swimmers in distress near the pier located at Trott Street.

According to Tony Young with Oak Island Water Rescue, members of a family had been in water that was not over their heads and had got stuck in a rip current.

A man, who was approximately 50 years old, had been pulled from the water by bystanders.

Emergency responders tried to resuscitate the man but they were unable to revive him.

Meanwhile, a search began for a missing 28-year-old male.

Multiple crews joined in the search including Oak Island Water Rescue, Fire Department, Police Department, the U.S. Coast Guard, NC Marine Patrol, Brunswick County Sheriff’s boats, helicopter and EMS, Southport Fire Department and EMS. Drones from the Oak Island UAS were also used in the search.

After searching for about two hours, the young man’s body was recovered from the area.

The victims were at the beach as part of a family visit. Their names are being withheld pending notification of further family members.

A yellow flag was flying at Oak Island today.

Copyright 2021 WECT. All rights reserved.