UPDATE: The victim has been confirmed to be a 38-year-old Iraqi Colonel, training at Fort Rucker to be an Apache helicopter pilot.
Investigators say the victim was with 33 fellow military students who were all wearing life jackets. The victim reportedly told his friends he could not swim and proceeded to take off his life jacket 10-15 minutes before jumping in the water. His friends rushed to save him but did not reach him in time.
Officials do not believe alcohol was to blame for the incident. No other injuries have been reported.
UPDATE: Overnight, the body of a missing person in Spring Creek was found by authorities, the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office stated on Facebook this morning.
JACKSON COUNTY, Fla. (WDHN) — Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and Houston County Sheriff’s Office are searching for a Fort Rucker student, who sunk below the water and couldn’t be located in Jackson County.
On Saturday, at approximately 1 p.m. the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call of a subject in distress on Spring Creek in Marianna.
Deputies responded and determined an individual with a group of military students from Fort Rucker had sunk below the water’s surface and could not be located.
The JCSO dive team along with a rescue dive team from Houston County deployed and worked into the early morning with no success.
Spring Creek and the Magnolia Bridge boat landing in Jackson County have been closed Sunday while rescue efforts continue on the waterway.
At this time, rescue efforts are continuing. Jackson County Sheriff Donald Edenfield asks that the public refrain from using the waterway in order to allow the rescue members to locate this subject.
Additionally, the Florida Wildlife Commission, Florida Highway Patrol, and several other agencies are contributing to the search efforts.
If you have information regarding the whereabouts of this subject, please contact the JCSO at 850-482-9624.
Stick with WDHN as we continue to follow this story.