Family: Hawk Newberry was fishing on dock when he fell in river

News
Hawk Newberry

Crews have been searching tirelessly for the little boy who fell into the river near Schwiebert Park.

It all happened around 7:30 last night.

The family tells Local 4 News 2-year-old Hawk Newberry was fishing with relatives on the dock when he fell in. 

They say two civilians jumped in to try and save him, but were unsuccessful.

Rescue crews were in the water until late last night and resumed those efforts around 8 this morning. 

Local 4’s Kelley Bowles, Briana Collier, Shawn Loging and Grace Runkel were back at the dock today. They’ll have the latest coming up on Local 4 News at 4, 5 and 6 and 10.

EARLIER UPDATE

The search is back on for a young boy who fell into the Mississippi River in Rock Island on Tuesday night.

Local 4 News was first at the scene in Schwiebert Park around 7:30 p.m. 

That’s when the Rock Island Fire Department says the child fell into the water. 

Several crews came in to help search — including a dive team. 

The search was suspended after about three hours.

Rock Island Fire Chief Jeff Yerkey says now they’ll use sonar to scan the water from the docks down to the centennial bridge.    

“What the side scanner does is it goes out about 40 feet in each direction, so we can scan in each direction and maybe try to locate the victim that way,” Yerkey said.     

Local 4 News will be following this story as it develops. 

EARLIER UPDATE

Recovery efforts for the 2-year-old who fell into the Mississippi River near Schwiebert Park will continue Wednesday at 7 a.m., according to Rock Island Fire Chief Jeff Yerkey.

Yerkey said after about three hours of searching they had to call off the search because of fatigue and his crew’s safety. 

The call came into the Rock Island Fire Department at 7:32 p.m. on Tuesday that a small child might have fallen into the river, Yerkey said. The shift commander then left to get more information from the scene at Schwiebert Park, while other crew members launched the department’s search and rescue boat. Yerkey said they also immediately called in for assistance from the Davenport Fire Department and later from the Rock Island Arsenal.

Once his crew was in the water, Yerkey said they used sonar to try and locate the 2-year-old. A diver then did an initial search of the area in the docks where the child fell in, but was not able to find anything. Yerkey said the diver went back down for a second time — this time for about 45 minutes — and searched a larger area. 

However, searching so close to the dock created problems for both the sonar and the diver.

“There’s so much debris in the water, especially underneath the dock,” Yerkey said. “There was so much debris it was kind of making that challenging, as well.” 

When the department resumes the search Wednesday morning, crews will be using sonar again. However, Yerkey said they’ll be looking in a much larger area that will spread down to Centennial Bridge.

Yerkey said the incident serves as a reminder to always be careful near the river. 

“It’s extremely dangerous. It might look pretty calm on the surface, but even a few feet down the current can take you away,” Yerkey said. “We always recommend that any time you’re near the water to have some kind of floatation device.” 

EARLIER UPDATE

Search teams are scouring the Mississippi River tonight looking for a young boy who fell into the water in Rock Island.

Local 4 News was on the scene at Schwiebert Park just before 7:30 tonight.

The family told us their two year old son fell into the river — and people immediately jumped in to save him.

Two Rock Island fire boats and one Davenport fire boat are helping with rescue efforts.

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