Body of 3rd missing Hunting Island swimmer found Wednesday

info@islandpacket.comJuly 17, 2013 

Rescue officials and park personnel gather on the beach at the campground area of Hunting Island State Park on Monday as the search for the last of three swimmers who disappeared in the surf on Sunday continues. The bodies of the missing swimmer's two companions have already been recovered from the waters around the island.

JAY KARR — Staff photo Buy Photo

The body of a 17-year-old man who disappeared Sunday while swimming at Hunting Island State Park was recovered Wednesday, more than three miles from where he and two relatives were last seen.

Mikee Phomma of Philadelphia was found by a beachgoer at about noon Wednesday, according to a news release from the Beaufort County Sheriff's Office. The bodies of a father and his son -- Phomma's uncle and cousin -- were found earlier this week.

Phomma's body was found on the southern end of Hunting Island, about three miles from where he disappeared with his uncle and cousin, the release said.

The Lady's Island-St. Helena Fire District was dispatched at about 12:30 p.m. Wednesday. The Beaufort County Coroner's Office confirmed the body was Phomma.

Phomma had been swimming Sunday afternoon with his 38-year-old uncle, Tiem Mok; 16-year-old cousin Nathan Mok; and a 14-year-old female cousin who was not identified. The four were using a boogie board a few hundred yards from shore when it got away from them, allowing them to be caught by strong currents.

The man and two teenagers were quickly overcome by current and vanished underwater, witnesses said. The girl floated on her back and paddled to shore.

Nathan Mok's body was found at 6 p.m. Sunday by a beachgoer not far from where he was last seen. The body of his father, Tiem, was found by a beachgoer at 10 a.m. Monday near cabins on the southern end of Hunting Island.

Phomma and the Moks, who were from Chesnee, were part of a group of extended family on vacation at the Hunting Island campground.

Follow reporter Matt McNab at twitter.com/IPBG_Matt.

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