Drowning victim's name released

He died just before birthday
Sep. 05, 2013 @ 08:06 AM

A 22-year-old Hispanic man who drowned Monday on Wilson Creek has been identified as Elder Ortiz Velasquez of Guatemala. He died two days before his birthday. 

Velasquez was visiting the area with cousins and friends from Morganton, and was overtaken just before 5 p.m. Monday by heavy currents in an area known as "the bathtub" that is popular with swimmers. Rescuers pulled him from the turbulent waters about 7 p.m. in the same area where he disappeared.

Velasquez was the third person to drown in the bathtub area in just over six weeks. On July 27, 10-year-old Delilah Love of Charlotte and 48-year-old Juan Alberdi of Huntersville, who were among six people from two families visiting the area, drowned after being swept away in high water.

None of the three were wearing life jackets or other flotation devices. Velasquez was not able to swim, relatives told Collettsville Fire and Rescue Capt. Larry Price.