Heather Gwen Rudolph, mother of 15-year-old Tyler James Patton, watches fearfully as game wardens use side scanning sonar to look for her son Saturday.
Heather Gwen Rudolph, mother of 15-year-old Tyler James Patton, watches fearfully as game wardens use side scanning sonar to look for her son Saturday. (Mark Engebretson)
The body of 15-year-old Tyler James Patton, of Burleson, was recovered shortly after 9:30 a.m. Saturday near the temporary boat ramp on FM 2951.
“A 9-1-1 call was made late Friday night by a person in the area at approximately 8:19 who thought they had heard and seen someone in distress in the water,” reported Judi Pierce, Brazos River Authority public information officer. “The BRA responded at 8:30 p.m. with boats equipped with side scan sonar. The search for a missing person was called off at about midnight.”
Pierce noted that the search resumed at first light Saturday with three BRA lake rangers, two game wardens and two divers from the Graham Fire Department as well as land-based help from the Palo Pinto County Sheriff’s Office.
Patton’s body was located about 9:15 a.m. Saturday in about 40 feet of water approximately 52 yards from the courtesy dock located at the temporary boat ramp, Pierce reported.
According to information from those who knew Patton, he told a friend he was going to walk to the water and was told to stay out of the water.
At midnight, the friend awoke, found that Patton had not returned and called 9-1-1. He was told of the report of a person in the water who was in distress.
Amanda Boyle, of Graham, was walking with her husband and children near Sam’s Dock around 8 p.m. Saturday.
“Our kids were playing in the shallow water,” she said. “We heard some yelling. It got louder, more frantic.

Advertisement


Boyle explained that, at first, it sounded as if it was on the other shoreline, north.
There was a couple with a jet ski at their location that decided to investigate.
“The man got on the jet ski and went around the corner in time to see fingers and a head come up a last time,” she said.
The woman on the jet ski dove into the water and tried on at least two occasions to locate the victim. She was unsuccessful in the dark, murky water.
“There was nothing any of us could do,” Boyle added.
“This is my son and I want to thank everyone involved in the search and for bring him back to me,” Heather Gwen Rudolph, Tyler’s mother, wrote on the Lake Country Sun’s Facebook page. “I also thank everyone for their prayers for my son and our family. He is truly and deeply missed and loved so much.”