20-year-old drowns at Backwoods Beach swimming area in Newton County
A 20-year-old man has drowned in the Backwoods Beach swimming area in Newton County.
The Newton County Sheriff's Office says Davonte Rokell "DJ" Jones, 20, died Saturday, despite the effort of friends who tried to rescue him.
The Sheriff's Office received a 911 call at about 6:30 p.m. Saturday about a possible drowning at Backwoods Beach, on County Road 4096 between Trout Creek and Bon Wier.
Newton County deputies, Game Wardens with Texas Parks and Wildlife and Trout Creek first responders arrived on scene.
According to the Sheriff's Office, it was reported that Jones was on a zip line and a friend was waiting at the bottom to help him to shore. He didn't know how to swim and landed in deep water.
Witnesses say efforts by friends to help Jones failed.
Game Wardens recovered his body at about 9:05 p.m. Saturday near the location where he was last seen.
A GoFundMe page has been set up for Davonte “DJ” Jones.
An excerpt from the page has been posted below.
Arrangements for “DJ” Davante Jones:
On Saturday June 16, 2018, Davonte “DJ” Jones,tragically lost his life in an accidental drowning incident. DJ had no immediate family support had recently been placed been under the guardianship and direction of a local family from Jasper.
DJ’s (community family) consisted of many people from Jasper who closely and genuinely cared for, looked after, and had DJ’s best interest in mind and at heart. The Executive Director and staff of Champion Oaks Ranch Children’s Home in Jasper were instrumental in overseeing DJ’s high school academics, his 2017 graduation from Jasper High School, and preparing him for enrollment in the LIT Welding program in the fall of 2017.
DJ, was known for his love of rodeo, and specifically for his passion of bull riding. DJ was an excellent bull rider who participated in Bibles & Bulls program at the Jasper County Cowboy Church, Harvest Church, and under the direction of Vern Kaylor.
All donations made to the Davonte “DJ” Jones Burial Fund will go directly to the expenses associated with DJ’s funeral arrangements, services and burial. Any remaining proceeds, after funeral expenses, will be donated to the Bibles & Bulls Ministry at Harvest Church in Jasper in DJ’s memory.