5-year-old American child, raft captain feared drowned in Jamaica

People gather along the Martha Brae River bank yesterday afternoon after news broke that a local raft captain and a five-year-old American boy who was on vacation on the island drowned during a rafting excursion. (Photo: JAMAICA OBSERVER/Horace Hines)

(JAMAICA OBSERVER) A five-year-old American boy who was vacationing in Jamaica, and a local raft captain were feared drowned in the Martha Brae River in Trelawny yesterday afternoon.

The rafter has been identified as Llewellyn Reid, also known as “Bagga Jagga” of a Trelawny address, while the boy is Jace Jones of a Massachusetts, USA, address.

The Jamaica Observer was told that about 1:30 pm Reid was navigating a raft down the river with three siblings, ages ranging from five to nine, and another child, when the five-year-old fell off the raft.

Five-year-old Jace Jones, who fell off a raft into the Martha Brae River yesterday, is feared drowned.

Reid jumped into the water to save the child but got into difficulties and is feared to have drowned.

The other children were eventually rescued from the raft after it drifted to a section of the river bank.

Divers from the Jamaica Defence Force Coast Guard called off a search for the two late yesterday evening.

The five-year-old and his two older siblings were visiting relatives on the island when they went to the popular attraction.

A large crowd gathered along the river bank after news of the tragedy broke yesterday afternoon.

Family members and friends of the boy, whose parents are Jamaican, were too overwhelmed with grief to speak with the Observer.

The three siblings, who arrived in the island last week, were expected to leave on Thursday.

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