Smyrna High School Student Drowns At Walter Hill Dam - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Smyrna High School Student Drowns At Walter Hill Dam

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Matthew Grissom's Friend Chuck Sterling Matthew Grissom's Friend Chuck Sterling

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – The body of an 18-year-old drowning victim was recovered near the Walter Hill Dam in Murfreesboro Monday afternoon.

Police identified the victim as Matthew Grissom who was a senior at Smyrna High School. Divers spent about two hours searching for Grissom in the Stones River.

Grissom was swimming with friends when something went wrong, he panicked and went underwater. Rescue crews believe the undercurrent at Walter Hill Dam is what made it difficult for the teen to swim. Officials said once a swimmer gets into a hydraulic it's very hard to get out.

"He was a good friend and it hurt to get that phone call," said Grissom's friend Chuck Sterling about hearing the devastating news.

To one of his best friends, the water not only took somebody close, but somebody with plans for the future. Sterling said he and Grissom planned to join the Marines together.

"He wanted to be right there with me, he wanted to be that friend that was behind my back. I mean we were that close," explained Sterling.

Rutherford County Fire and Rescue crews said Grissom was not wearing a life jacket. Investigators do not believe alcohol was involved.

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