HENDERSON, N.C. (WNCN) — A teenage boy was found dead in Kerr Lake on Monday less than a day after he was reported missing.
Keyon Philippe, 16, of Warrenton was reported missing just after 6 p.m. Sunday after vanishing near Satterwhite Point, officials say.
Keyon was at the lake with family and friends and swam out in the lake to retrieve a ball, officials say.
Keyon never made it back to shore.
Search and rescue efforts with Vance County discovered Keyon’s body just before noon on Monday.
“My boy was a loving person, kind, he would do anything for anybody you know. His biggest thing was helping people,” said Keyon’s mother, Wanda Ballance.
Keyon was a rising junior and played football at Warren County High School.
“Keyon was a great child and he was just a joy to everyone,” said Keyon’s father, Garey Balance.
Keyon was a good swimmer, his family says.
“Whatever was down there was pulling him, because he came up and you could see him gasping for air and he went down. And he approximately did that four times. The fifth time he went under the water he never came back up,” said Wanda Ballance.
Keyon’s mother says the drowning happened so fast, she still can’t believe he’s gone.
“I told him I would never leave him, but now he done left me,” she said.
His football coach posted a message on Facebook on Monday.
“I ask that everyone say a prayer for my community and the parents and loved ones of Keyon Philippe,” wrote Bryan Fuller of Warren County High School.
“It was truly an honor to have coached him these last couple of years….. I know that his spirit will live on. He will forever be apart of the Eagle Football Family. This season is definitely dedicated to him,” Fuller added.