Classmates, Teammates Remember 17-Year-Old Temple Drowning Victi - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

Classmates, Teammates Remember 17-Year-Old Temple Drowning Victim

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(KCEN) - A day after search crews pulled a body from Lake Belton, the Bell County Sheriff's Department identified him.

A tragic drowning, made even more so by the fact he was just 17 years old.

Just two weeks after losing 18-year-old Kimmy Longbotham to a car accident, Temple High School lost a second student.

It's a tragedy friends say they just can't believe.

"When I realized it, I just, I couldn't breathe at first," said 16-year-old Marquelle Davis-Ponce, a junior at THS.

He's known 17-year-old Kentrell Chandler since 5th grade.

"Definitely going to be quiet without Kentrell," he said, "'cause he was always making everybody laugh."

Chandler, who friends knew as Keytrell, drowned Saturday evening at Lake Belton. Police say he was trying to swim across a cove at Rogers Park in Morgan's Point.

He ran into some trouble, went under, and didn't come back up.

Crews pulled his body from the lake around 8:30 p.m., after searching for two hours.

Lake-goers say it's a popular place for kids to swim.

"Even though we've got all our assets on the lake, these things do happen," said Donnie Adams with the BCSD.

Now friends honor the teenager's memory.

One friend tweeted, "Rest in paradise Keytrell, gone but never forgotten, we're all going to miss you."

Others remember his love of football, and his never-ending desire to improve his game.

"Didn't miss a day of practice," Davis-Ponce said. "He'd work his butt off when he was there, too."

He was set to join the varsity team next year.

A teammate tweeted, "I can literally feel pain in my chest, but I will not fall. Keytrell was one of the strongest guys I knew and I will be as strong as him RIP."

And Temple's head football coach, Mike Spradlin, took to twitter, too.

He wrote, "We've lost a good soldier, a real team mate. I'm sad.... Gonna miss him. Love you guys... More than you know," with the hashtag #footballfamilystrong.

"My coach always said that football is the closest thing you'll get to war, because you're with nothing but family, you know," Davis-Ponce said. "One of my brothers has fallen."

The second Temple High School student to die in two weeks, it's a sobering end to the school year.

The sheriff's department hasn't said why Chandler might have struggled trying to cross the cove.

His body has been sent to Dallas for an autopsy.

Game wardens, park rangers, and the Morgan's Point Resort Fire Department all helped in the search. The investigation into what happened continues.
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