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Apr 5, 2019

A Double Head Cabbage Residents Back Flips Off a Tree to his Death

Percival Flowers Jr.

Family and friends of Percival Flowers Junior are grieving his untimely death. The experienced swimmer perished in the Belize River a few days ago when he flipped from a tree into the river. But something went awfully wrong and Flowers Junior never resurfaced. Hours later, his body was pulled out of the river by his friends. Nurse’s Landing is a popular recreational spot in the village and is the finish line for the second leg of the La Ruta River Challenge. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

A fun filled outing at Nurse’s Landing in Double Head Cabbage Village on Tuesday afternoon turned tragic for a group of friends who went swimming. Percival Flowers Junior was among many villagers who often times went swimming in the Belize River. But on Tuesday, he flipped off a tree on the bank, submerged into the water and didn’t resurface. His friends, who are members of the Belize Coast Guard, immediately began searching for him.


Kimberly Flowers, Sister of Deceased

“It was a group of them out here having fun swimming and three of the guys went up on the tree and my brother was the last one to jump in and he decided he never wanted to do it again and he said he was going to come down. And he still never got down the tree and he decided to do a back flip off the tree at that height and that was it.”


His sister Kimberly says that there is amateur footage that captured the flip and when her brother went under water. While the family awaits the results of a post-mortem, she believes that when Percival plunged into the water, he may have hit his head, causing his demise.


Kimberly Flowers

Kimberly Flowers

“We are not sure if his neck is broken, his spine or he had a heart attack. We are not sure as yet, but we know it is not a drown. He is one of the best swimmers; they do say that best swimmers drown as well. But we believe just because of his injury; he never resurfaced back. Something went wrong; it is not a drown. I saw the video and when he jumped in the water, he resurfaced just a little bit like he was swimming to shore. And from there he never did yell for help so the guys said [they felt] he was playing. And he went back down and then he never resurface back.”


The incident occurred around two p.m. and the body was retrieved from the river sometime after five p.m. by his friends.


Kimberly Flowers

“The boys, three of them are coastguard—those are our family as well. They were diving and as night was coming in, they tried to give up, but one of the other family members told them you guys can’t give up that is your job; you need to go back and find him. And as they went back they found him in the same area. But what happened is that they didn’t have their gears so they had to just go down and feel for him because the water was already dirty because they were swimming around.”


Family and friends have since cut down the tree from which Percival flipped to his death.


Kimberly Flowers

“The boys they can’t take it; they never wanted to go up and like after twelve in the night, they machete and cut down the tree. They don’t want any more accident like that. It’s a yearly routine that they do off the tree, but no one ever done it like a back flip. The guys were telling him don’t do it, don’t do it and he still do it.”


Thirty-eight-year-old Percival Flowers Junior was a father of a four-month old baby girl. Duane Moody for News Five.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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