Teens pulled from Harpeth River were ‘crying like babies’

Tuesday, May 4, 2010 at 5:59pm

The four Williamson County teenagers who decided to go canoeing on the flooded Harpeth River Tuesday are not very popular with residents of Franklin's Cottonwood subdivision.

Early in the afternoon, the four teenagers were spotted floating down the river near the subdivision. A resident called the Williamson County Sheriff's Office after someone apparently saw the canoe tip over. A search and rescue effort was launched.

In the area that was hard hit by flooding, residents stopped their cleanup efforts and joined the search and rescue.

More than an hour later, a woman stood watch with her bicycle on a partially submerged bridge on Moran Road, next to the Old Natchez Country Club. She declined to state her name, but did say that she had seen a lot of strange things float by. If the smell of the water was any indication, she wasn't kidding.

What she didn’t know was that reports were coming in that the boys were safe.

Back at Cottonwood, a neighborhood volunteer said what law enforcement officials said, but with a bit more color.

"The boys were found,” she said. “They were clinging to a tree and crying like little babies until they were pulled out."

Asked where they were now, the woman replied, "They are at home and in deep trouble."

Not missing a beat, the woman then added, "If you want to tell anyone anything, tell them the boys weren't Cottonwood residents, but we need help here. We were hit hard. Tell people if they want to help, they can come here."