Authorities released the identities of two men who drowned in separate incidents Thursday evening in the Myrtle Beach area.
Autopsies performed on both men Friday morning showed they each died from asphyxiation caused by drowning, Hendrick said.
Johnny Ward, 42, of Pound, Va., died after drowning in the ocean at 71st Avenue North in Myrtle Beach, Horry County Deputy Coroner Tony Hendrick said.
The incident occurred about 8:15 p.m. Thursday while Ward was swimming in the ocean, Myrtle Beach police Capt. David Knipes said. A report about the incident should be released later today.
In a separate incident, Jeffrey Dinkins, 41, of Lewisville, N.C., was pulled from the water at 7 p.m. Thursday near 9550 Shore Drive behind Ocean Annie's Beach Bar, Hendrick said.
In a report about the incident, police learned that Dinkins helped a 40-year-old man and the mans 6-year-old daughter after they were caught in a rip current and unable to swim. A witness told police the man and his daughter were able to get to shore, but Dinkins struggled with the current.
A fourth man, who is 62 from Myrtle Beach, also went to help them, but was pulled away from shore by the current, according to the report. Other witnesses pulled Dinkins to shore and Horry County police Officer Erik Karney, who was first to arrive on scene, grabbed a lifeguard flotation device and went into the water for the fourth man.
The man was about 150 yards off shore and was holding on to a cooler as a makeshift flotation device, according to the report. Karney was able to bring the man back to shore.
Horry County Fire Rescue performed CPR on Dinkins and he was pronounced dead at Grand Strand Regional Medical Center. The 40-year-old man, his 6-year-old daughter and the 62-year-old man were checked out at the scene.
More details will be posted when they become available.