A 30 year-old male from Mauk who went missing after a day of swimming and camping on the Flint River on Saturday, June 8, has been found.
Rescue Chief Bobby Booker and his team spent Friday afternoon, June 14, conducting a three-abreast kayak and canoe run through Yellowjacket Shoals. Ryan Barfield, age 30, was found near the point of a small island in the section of river between the two portions of Yellowjacket Shoals. They secured the body and hiked out to South Roland Road, where they were met by DNR rangers, Upson SO, EMA personnel, and the Deputy Coroner for Upson County. EMA’s ATV was utilized to take personnel back into the scene and recover the body. The Coroner’s Office had the body transported to the GBI Crime Lab in Atlanta for an autopsy per protocol in this type of death.
Our condolences go out to the Barfield family. With the EMA Rescue Team’s mission complete, this family can now have closure.
Many agencies were involved in this operation. Upson EMA would like to identify and thank the following agencies involved: Georgia Department of Natural Resources Rangers, who stayed on scene 24/7 since it began; Upson County Sheriff’s Office; Talbot County Sheriff’s Office; Georgia State Patrol; GSP’s Dive Team; Georgia K9 Rescue Association; numerous EMA volunteers from surrounding volunteer fire departments in Upson and Talbot Counties – Thurston, Northside, Rock Hill, Woodland, O’Neal, Talbotton; Georgia Forestry Commission; City of Woodland PD K9; Upson County Coroner’s Office; Talbot County Coroner’s Office; and Upson EMA Command Staff. This was one of the smoothest coordination efforts of multiple agencies that has ever been completed by Upson EMA.
Upson EMA would also like to thank the numerous donors who brought water, sports drinks, snacks and food to the operation area for all the responders. Many contributed meals for the responders or provided discounted items to the operation or collected the items dropped off. Individuals and companies involved: Upson County Chairman Rusty Blackston, Golden Living Center, McDonald’s, Little Ceasar’s, Peachtree Café, The Rock Ranch, Dwarf House-Griffin, First Baptist Church of Thomaston, The Gathering, Women of Faith/Mountain View Baptist Church, Sunnyside Grocery, Mildred Baughcum, Chris Sanchez, Northside Superette, Ingles, Wal-Mart, Sylvia Hills Christian Church, Thomaston Fire Department, and a host of individuals yet unnamed. For all of the support, Upson EMA is grateful.
To the members of the EMAs of Pike, Lamar, Meriwether, Talbot, Taylor and Upson who were preparing for an all-out bank search on Saturday, June 15, we say thank you for your willingness to participate.