Woman Drowns in Quarry

WINNSBORO – The body of a young woman was pulled from the waters of an abandoned rock quarry near Great Falls last week nearly two hours after she sank below the surface and drowned.

Fairfield County Coroner Barkley Ramsey said Brooke Lynn Huffstetler, 26, of 359 Miles Road in Great Falls, and a 17-year-old female from Jackson, Tenn. were swimming in the water-filled quarry off Highway 901 on July 23. Huffstetler, while diving from an embankment, struck a tree before hitting the water at approximately 6:45 p.m., went underneath the water and never resurfaced. Emergency units responded approximately 15 minutes later and the Fairfield County Dive Team recovered Huffstetler’s body at around 8:30 p.m. in 40-feet of water near where she went under.

According to the incident report from the Fairfield County Sheriff’s Office, Huffstetler struck the tree on her initial jump into the water earlier that evening, but appeared to have suffered no serious injuries. She and 17-year-old Shian Lynn Reek then swam across the water to a dock where the two stayed for 10 to 15 minutes before returning to the upper side of the quarry for a second jump. When Huffstetler jumped again, she struck the same tree, landed in the water and floated face down for a short period of time. According to the report, Reek called out Huffstetler’s name and, getting no response, climbed down a rope to the water below. By the time Reek reached the water, Huffstetler had vanished below the surface.

The two were trespassing on private property during the incident, Ramsey said. Water in the old quarry ranges from 80 to 200 feet in depth, Ramsey added.