The Spring River claimed the life of a 6-year-old boy June 10.
Norris McGhee Jr. of Germantown, Tenn., died after getting caught in a crevice in a rock shelf of the river, Police Chief Ernie Rose said.
When Rose arrived Norris McGhee Sr. told Rose he found his son "in a hole in the river," Rose said.
"The water pouring over the edge and into the crevice caused an approximate four-foot hole in the lower shelf rock," Rose said. "The child was in the crevice and possibly pinned by the force of the river water itself."
Rose said it is not known exactly how the child became trapped underwater. The boy did have on a life vest.
Relatives and witnesses told Rose the child had been under as little as six minutes to as long as 30 minutes, he said.
Norris McGhee Sr. had pulled the child out of the water and began CPR on the boy, Rose said.
"Norris McGhee Jr. simply slipped away unnoticed by the several adults and other children in there," Rose said. "Neither the parents nor any of the relatives that I talked to had been drinking. None appeared to be on any illegal drugs."
The incident has been ruled an accidental freshwater drowning.