Twin brother of drowning victim speaks about tragic incident

Vigil held for 12-year-old drowning victim
Published: Sep. 26, 2022 at 10:35 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 26, 2022 at 10:36 PM EDT
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Friends and family are mourning the loss of a boy who drowned Saturday in the Ohio River in Guyandotte.

Monday evening, loved ones and community members gathered outside the home of 12-year-old Christian Weaver for a candlelight vigil and balloon release.

Those who knew the Huntington East Middle School seventh-grader say he was the type of kid who never had a problem making friends.

Christian Weaver
Christian Weaver(WSAZ with permission)

“He was a very smiley, very huggable child,” family friend Cassie Spurlock said. “He didn’t know a stranger.”

“We were pretty close,” Christian’s twin brother Brenton said. “We always played games, played outside, did everything together.”

Brenton says Saturday afternoon, he and Christian and a couple friends went swimming near the East Huntington Bridge close to their home.

Brenton says he and the friends got out of the water, but Christian stayed in. He says Christian appeared to be struggling, but at first they didn’t think he was being serious.

“At first we thought he was playing, because any other time we swim at the river, he plays like that,” Brenton said. “We couldn’t help him because he was too deep.”

Firefighters came and searched for nearly two hours before finding Christian.

“I was crying,” Brenton said. “It’s pretty rough not having a brother anymore.”

The family is dealing with two enormous losses on back-to-back days. They say Christian’s grandfather died Friday from health problems.

Brenton says he hopes other children avoid swimming in the river so they don’t risk experiencing this type of tragedy.

“Don’t swim at the river, because you might lose one of your family members or your best friends,” he said.

Christian lived with his grandmother, who says she had adopted him. She described him as extremely lovable and said he loved to give hugs.

For related coverage:

Name of 12-year-old drowning victim released