Allysa Huffstutler found dead


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LOCUST FORK, Ala. (WIAT) — UPDATE (x6): The body of Allysa Huffstutler has been found. She was spotted by helicopter about a mile downstream from where she went under.

UPDATE (x5): Blount County EMA Director Max Armstrong released the following information on Friday morning:

The search for Allysa Huffstutler has not been declared a recovery mission. A grounds and water search will continue today.

Volunteers are asked to report to the command post at Kings Bend Bridge.

All donations should be sent to the American Red Cross.

Family and friends are hopeful that Allysa will be found alive.

UPDATE (x4): CBS42’s Kaitlin McCulley spoke with Allysa’s uncle, Larry Steton, about his niece. He said that “She was a strong swimmer, a certified lifeguard and certified scuba diver. We’re holding on hope that she may have gotten out.”

UPDATE (x3): Volunteers from across Blount County are joining forces with several rescue agencies to search for 19-year-old Allysa Huffstutler.

Teams are set up at two locations on the Warrior River, one at the double bridges and another further downstream.

(WIAT-CBS42 Kaitlin McCulley)
Allysa and her friends were on inflatable rafts like these which are susceptible to being punctured by sharp rocks.(WIAT-CBS42 Kaitlin McCulley)

Allysa was floating down the river with six of her friends, when they hit a rough section of rapids.

 “We’ve seen a lot of trouble on this river before. It’s a very dangerous, dangerous rocks. And a lot of time with the water you can’t see that. And even though the water’s come down some, it’s still a very dangerous place.” –Pay Seames, American Red Cross

Alyssa and her friends were on inflatable rafts which are susceptible to being punctured by sharp rocks.

UPDATE (x2): CBS42’s Kaitlin McCulley spoke with the Blount County EMA Director, Max Armstrong, about their investigation. 

“Nobody’s given up hope yet.” –Max Armstrong, Blount County EMA Director 

He told CBS42 that “They were on inflatable tubes and floats, a couple of them lost their floats, one was able to come out and call for 911 because the other person who lost her float was not seen after that.”

As for Allysa he said that, “She was last seen about the third set of rapids on the river. The Locust Fork River is the premier white water river for this part of the state. It’s used for competitions. It’s a very challenging river.”

He ended it by asking the public to send up a lot of prayers right now, because there have been “instances in the past where someone was able to get out of the river and wander the wooded section on the west side for a day and a half before they made contact with a road to find somebody. Nobody’s given up hope yet.”

PHOTOS: The search for 19-year-old Allysa Huffstutler is underway

UPDATE: Per the Blount County Sheriff, the name of the missing UA student is Allysa Huffstutler

ORIGINAL: A missing person’s search is underway in Blount County for a 19-year-old female.

Teams prepare to search the river in hopes of finding 19-year-old Alyssa Huffstutler. (WIAT-CBS42 Kaitlin McCulley)
Teams prepare to search the river in hopes of finding 19-year-old Allysa Huffstutler. (WIAT-CBS42 Kaitlin McCulley)

What is known at this time is that authorities including Jefferson County EMA, Blount County Sheriff’s Office, the Trussville Fire Department, and volunteers, are searching for the girl.

She is a 19-year-old  student who was last seen Wednesday at 4 p.m. when six of her friends were rafting down the Warrior River.

The raft overturned and everyone was able to escape except for her. Teams have been searching a 4 mile stretch of the river since Wednesday afternoon for her.

Search crews are using canoes, rafts, 4-wheelers, helicopters, and divers.

CBS42 has a person on the scene and will continue to update you with all the latest information.

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