Man drowns in Darlington County lake while fishing with grandson, coroner says

Pee Dee

DARLINGTON COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) — A 74-year-old man drowned Tuesday in a Darlington County lake during a fishing trip, according to Darlington County Coroner Todd Hardee.

Thomas Earl Benenhaley, of Sumter, drowned at about 8 a.m. in Lauthers Lake near Mechanicsville, Hardee said. Benenhaley was on a fishing trip with his grandson when he fell into the lake.

Benenhaley’s grandson, who is an Iraq War Veteran, jumped into the water and pulled him to shore, but he was pronounced dead, Hardee said.

An autopsy is scheduled for later this week, Hardee said.

The death has been ruled accidental.

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