The Sebastian County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue team joins similar crews from across the state to assist in the search for a missing officer from eastern Arkansas.
On January 11, 2013, Nick Swink, 24, fell from the St. Francis County Bridge into the river below. Search and rescue efforts have been ongoing since.
Swink served as an officer for the Wynne Police Department for four years. He was set to begin work as a deputy for the Cross County Sheriff's Office in late January.
Chief Deputy Mike Blevins with the Sebastian County Sheriff's Office estimated more than 100 people will take part in the weekend search.
"Sebastian County's going to provide about 20 people including two boats and an ATV to assist in the search and rescue recovery operation," said Chief Deputy Blevins.
The team will include ten deputies as well as ten rural firefighters from departments in Sebastian County. They will join search and rescue teams from 13 other counties.
Blevins said the team will comb 13 miles downstream from where Swink fell into the river. Deputy Greg Farris said he hopes the weather will cooperate.
"We're hoping it stays within a certain workable temperature where the endurance of the searchers can prolong and keep things going," said Deputy Farris.
Farris said he looks forward to working with the other agencies. "Where one agency may lack, another one can pick up."
The Sebastian County Search and Rescue team hopes to provide Swink's family closure this weekend.
“It’s a real tragedy that something like this happens, and it’s hard to explain how you feel about it," said Blevins. "Obviously we want to help in any way we can to assist them in the recovery operations and to have some conclusion for them and their families.”
The team will return home Sunday, Feb. 24.