Mother of Drowning Victim Donates Life Jackets To Save Others

After her son’s drowning death 3 years ago, a Wetumpka mother is turning her son’s tragic story into a message of awareness.
She’s teamed up with local law enforcement in hopes of preventing other drowning deaths by donating life jackets.

“It took 6 hours, 6 long hours before he was even located” says Tionette Lewis as she recalls the day she learned her son Shalom had drowned while swimming in Corn Creek in Wetumpka. She explains that “he got caught up in a current, in an undertow”.

She’s now using his death as a platform to educate others on the dangers of swimming in unpredictable waters. “I don’t care how good of a swimmer you are when you tackle water like this… whether you’re in a boat…you need a life jacket, you need a life jacket, you don’t know where the currents are, you don’t how the undertow is up under neath… you have no idea” explains Lewis.

She collected dozens of life jackets and donated them to local law enforcement.

Alex Lacey , commander of Boat Safety Education  says “we’ll go out to different education events, as well as troopers will have them in the boats with them and if we see a child that needs a life jacket or doesn’t have something that can help save their life down the road we’ll make sure to give it out to them”.

Jess Thornton of the Alabama Law Enforcement agency is hoping this mother’s plea for water safety, will go hand in hand with their efforts to prevent senseless deaths, especially during the holiday weekend. He explains “Fourth of July last year we had people that didn’t go home at the end of the day because of something that could have been prevented, whether that be drownings or involved in boating incident losing their life or in the highway”.

Lewis says “donating the life jackets is just a small thing to me, I would never want another parent or person or wife or whatever.. to experience what I had to, or see what I saw”. She hopes that this will become an annual event.



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