UPDATE: Services pending for Madison Central drowning victim


UPDATE: 5 p.m. June 17, 2020: Funeral service still are pending for Emanuel Prewitt.

UPDATE:  (06/16/2020 10:40 p.m.)

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BOYLE COUNTY, Ky. (WTVQ) – After nearly a week of searching, the body of a Madison Central High School football player was recovered Tuesday night in Herrington Lake, according to Boyle County Emergency Management.

As many as 30 people from numerous search crews had been looking for the body of 17-year old Emanuel Prewitt since last Wednesday when he went under while swimming with some friends in the lake.

Boyle County’s Emergency Management director says the body was found near where Prewitt went under.  Mike Wilder says he hopes the recovery will provide the heartbroken family some closure.

Investigators say Prewitt, who was described as athletic and a good swimmer, tried to swim with some friends from the lake’s bank to Gwinn Island, a distance of about 300-yards.  Prewitt’s friends made it safely, he did not.

Father Jim Sichko, who was a longtime pastor in Madison County, where he still makes his home, offered to pay for Prewitt’s funeral as “an act of mercy.”  Father Sichko now serves as a Papal Missionary of Mercy for Pope Francis.


UPDATE: (06/11/2020 12:30 p.m.)

BOYLE COUNTY, KY. (WTVQ) – The search for Emanuel Prewitt continues on Lake Herrington between Harrodsburg and Danville in Boyle County, according to Mike Wilder, Director of the Office of Emergency Management in Danville and Boyle County.

Wilder said search crews were back on the water at 9 a.m. Thursday.

Wilder says they hope to locate Prewitt’s body but will cease recovery operations by dark Thursday night if they are unsuccessful. Wilder says that will likely be around 8 or 9 p.m.

The teens were jumping off the concrete pillars of the old lock and swimming to the island when Prewitt disappeared, Wilder said. The area is near Coffey’s Cove Marina.

The area is not near a road and the teens walked there, apparently. It once was a popular spot but now is accessible only by boat or foot, Wilder said.

Water in the area is 120 feet deep and murky and has strong currents, making it dangerous for swimmers and divers. The hazard for divers is the reason searchers are using sonar and other remote devices to comb the area. Four boats are involved in the search.

The incident marks the fourth likely drowning in the region in the last two weeks, including one in Jessamine County, one in Russell County at the southern end of Lake Cumberland, one in Wolfe County and his case.


BOYLE COUNTY, Ky. (WTVQ) – A rising senior football player at Madison Central High School is missing on popular Lake Herrington and presumed drowned, according to Boyle County fire officials.

The Madison Central football team held a prayer vigil at 9 p.m. Wednesday at Tates Creek Baptist Church for a prayer vigil for Emanuel Prewitt.

Fire officials got a call at about 5:30 p.m. that a group friends, including Prewitt, tried to swim from the bank to Gwinn Island, a distance of about 300 yards, according to fire officials.

The 17-year-old Prewitt made it about halfway, went under and wasn’t seen again.

Rescue crews are searching using mostly sonar because of poor water conditions and visibility. Water at the point where he was last seen is about 120 feet deep, fire officials told WTVQ ABC 36 News.

The area is north of Danville and southeast of Harrodsburg.

The search was called off Wednesday night because of dark and will resume Thursday morning.

Herrington Lake is a 2,335-acre artificial lake located in Mercer, Garrard and Boyle counties. The lake was created by Kentucky Utilities’ damming of the Dix River, a tributary of the Kentucky River, in 1925 to generate hydroelectric power.

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Tom Kenny joined ABC 36 News in June of 2001 as a General Assignment Reporter. A native of Peoria, Illinois, he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Western Illinois University. He currently anchors ABC 36 News at 5pm, 6pm and 11pm. Tom has more than three decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He is the only broadcast journalist in Lexington television history to be honored with a national Edward R. Murrow Award. Tom was recognized for reporting on a story that gave a rare glimpse inside the secretive world of the Federal Witness Protection Program. He has won an Emmy Award for anchoring and another for investigative reporting, exposing the deceit and potential danger of online diploma mills. Tom has ten other Emmy nominations to his credit for investigative and feature reporting. He has won Associated Press Awards for reporting and anchoring. He has won two Addy Awards for excellence in promotional writing. Tom was the first broadcast journalist in Lexington TV history to be awarded the Silver Circle Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. It is one of the highest honors given by NATAS. It recognizes television professionals who have performed distinguished service within the television industry for 25-years or more. Tom was honored for more than his longevity, he was recognized for making an enduring contribution to the vitality of the television industry and for setting high standards of achievement. He was also recognized for giving back to the community as a mentor, educator and volunteer. Tom also has network broadcast experience in radio and television having worked as a sports reporter for ESPN, Sportschannel, NBC Sports and the Breeders’ Cup. He was also the studio host and halftime producer for CBS Radio Sports’ College Football Game of the Week and covered the NFL for One-On-One Radio Sports. Prior to joining WTVQ-TV, Tom was Vice-President of the Houston Astros Minor League baseball team in Lexington. He was part of the original management team that brought professional baseball back to the Bluegrass after a nearly 50-year absence. Tom has lived in Lexington since 1984. In that time, he has been heavily involved with dozens of charity and civic groups, with a special emphasis on helping Veterans. He can be reached at tkenny@wtvq.com. You can also follow Tom on Facebook www.facebook.com/TomKennyABC and Twitter @TomKennyNews. Just click on the links at the top of the page.