A 43-year-old woman drowned in Allatoona Lake last Saturday after she and a friend fell off a float, authorities said.

Georgia Department of Natural Resources spokesman Mark McKinnon confirmed Monday morning that Keisha Pitts was pronounced dead at WellStar Kennestone Hospital after being pulled from the lake Saturday afternoon.

According to a Cherokee Sheriff’s Office incident report:

Cherokee County deputies responded at about 3:45 p.m. last Saturday to a call for help near Galts Ferry Landing near Acworth. 911 dispatchers had been told that two women had fallen off a float into the lake and that one was missing.

When deputies arrived they were flagged down and pointed toward an area where an unresponsive woman, later identified as Pitts, was being given CPR. The deputy took over lifesaving efforts from a man who had helped search for and bring Pitts in from the lake. Once emergency medical staff arrived, they also tried to revive Pitts and transported her to Kennestone.

Deputies then began to gather information from witnesses. Two people who had been out on the lake on a personal watercraft said that they noticed a woman struggling to swim to shore.

They went to the woman’s aid, helping her onto the boat and took her to safety on shore. The woman, Jarlawnda Davis, 38, of Atlanta told her rescuers that Pitts was still out in the water somewhere.

A 45-year-old man who had been windsurfing also told deputies he had seen Davis struggling to swim to shore and saw the personal watercraft operator pick her up. The man who rescued Davis then picked up the man who was windsurfing, and they searched the water for Pitts. They then located her in the water and she was unresponsive. They brought her to shore and started CPR until the first deputy arrived.

Witnesses told the deputies that they estimated Pitts had been in the water for at least 10 minutes.

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Managing Editor

Gary Tanner is managing editor of The Cherokee Tribune, Cherokee Ledger-News and Cherokee Life magazine. He has been working as a journalist since 1985.

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