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21-year-old dies after trying to aid others caught in rip current

Justin Eakes (Facebook)

GREENVILLE, Pitt County - A 21-year-old who was reportedly attempting to save others caught in a rip current off Atlantic Beach on Sunday has died, hospital officials confirm.

Vidant Medical Center spokesperson Amy Holcomb confirmed 21-year-old Justin Eakes, of Greenville, died after being flown there by helicopter on Sunday.

According to the Atlantic Beach Fire Department, Eakes was among five people who were in distress when firefighters arrived at the unprotected section of the beach. The 21-year-old man and another woman needed medical attention.

"We made access with the jet skis and EMS unit to the location on the beach. We got on scene and there were multiple victims, CPR was being performed on one of the victims," said Kevin White, Shift Captain at Atlantic Beach Fire Department.

"The other was doing OK. She was transported to the hospital and is in good condition. The second victim. the one who had CPR on him, they got a heartbeat back at the hospital."

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