Belize Coast Guard officers were today joined by members of the public in the search for a body of a man, who may have drowned over the weekend in Grace Bank Village, Belize District. Thirty-three-year-old Herwin Godoy went swimming around four o’clock yesterday afternoon in the river that passes through the village but unfortunately, he was swept away by strong currents. Our newsroom spoke with his cousin Natasha Requena about how Sunday’s event unfolded.
Natasha Requena, Cousin: “Well from what I understand he came with his brother yesterday. They decided it was a Sunday, it was very hot and they were going to take a swim and they went to somewhere in Ladyville and they didn’t like it and so a friend told them about this area in Grace Bank and they said let’s take a trip. They didn’t know anything about the area so they decided they will come and upon reaching his brother told me that they saw a couple with a baby and he asked them if it’s good to swim, if it’s deep and the young lady said no and they went in but his brother is a life guard so he was able to handle himself. He’s not a swimmer per say, he sat in the vehicle for a while and about five minutes after he decided he would go in the water. Upon entering the water it happened so quickly I would say not even within five minutes, as soon as he got into the water he stepped and he realized it was too deep and he went down and he tried to get up back. He went down again and that’s when his brother and his brother’s friend realized that he was going down, they were a distance away from him when they realized that they need to go and help him. Andre his brother explained to me that he was so tired and his friend went ahead and Andre couldn’t go down and help his brother because he was so tired but his friend went and tried to rescue him but also he got tired because they swam from a distance to meet him and when his friend tried again that’s when he disappeared.”
Requena, who is also heading the search party, told us more about the efforts to locate Godoy’s body.
Natasha Requena, Cousin:“We have been out here from this morning and we were trying our best. I must say Mr.Sobernis from the Coast Guard he has been here every step of the way explaining to me everything so I could relay it to the family. They took me down the river bank to actually see what was happening so we could have looked for him, nothing. The divers came, the Coast Guard brought divers they went down they are actually right now on a little ten minute break before they go back in so I must say the support has been overwhelming. Honorable Kareem Musa came out, Honorable Anthony Mahler reached out to us, Honorable Mr.Leal everybody is trying their part to assist the family so we could at least have closure as to what we will do next. We’re hoping for the best, we’re a family that we won’t lose faith, we already told ourselves that we won’t go home without him today. We know for a fact we’ll definitely take him home with us today because we know he’s gone all we want to do is to give him a proper burial.”
Up to news time, today Godoy’s body has not yet been retrieved but efforts continue tomorrow morning. Godoy worked as a driver for Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for the past ten years and leaves behind four kids and a fifth on the way.