by: Alexa Ashwell Updated:
MONROE, N.C. - A dive team assembed Friday morning, ready to resume their search for the body of an 18-year-old who officials said drowned in a Monroe lake Thursday.
Crews suspended the search Friday night and will resume Saturday morning.
Several police and fire agencies were called to Lake Twitty just after 5 p.m. Thursday.
Officials said the teen was fishing with his grandfather when he had a seizure that caused him to fall out of the boat and into the water.
“The grandfather went back to shore to call for help when the teen never resurfaced,” said Pete Hovanc, communications director for the city of Monroe.
Family members rushed to the lake when they were told about their missing loved one.
Relatives identified the teen as Malique Streater and said he had just completed his junior year at Forrest Hills High School.
“He left this world doing something he loved to do. He left this world being with someone he truly trusted and loved and depended on, who helped raise him,” said Malique’s grandmother, Effie Knotts. “I know the way he left this world. I just thank God he left that way because leaving here doing something that you love doing, that’s a good thing. He was an outdoor person, he loved hunting, fishing, just doing things with his grandfather and grandmother.”
Crews searched the lake’s waters for more than four hours Thursday before officials were forced to suspend the search due to lightning.
“I am hoping and praying we will find him so he can be at peace. We’ve been coming together by talking with each other and praying. We came all down here together so we can find him and put him to rest,” Knotts told Channel 9.
Officials said the boat did have life jackets but they were unsure if Malique was wearing one.
“He has been having [seizures] for quite some time. He was on medication, but on the same token, he progressed and he was able to do things a normal child would be able to do for his age. I am just praying and thanking God. Sooner or later, this is going to come together and we are going to find him and put his body at rest,” Knotts said.
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