Man Drowns in Miami River While Celebrating 21st Birthday

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The mother of a young man who drowned while celebrating his 21st birthday on a boat in the Miami River is speaking out just days after the tragedy.

Trevon Darling had spent months planning the Friday night birthday bash that ended in his death.

His mother, Lashawn Akins-Taylor, said the moment she heard something went wrong is still fresh in her memory.

“I got the call, I was sitting there doing my hair, I got that call, I rushed, I ran red lights, I don’t care if my car flipped over getting to trauma,” she said.

According to a police report, Darling was on a boat that was returning to the dock around 9:30 p.m. Friday when he jumped off the back.

Investigators said the captain returned to help, along with other boaters who jumped in the water, but the rescue efforts were unsuccessful.

Darling was rushed to the hospital after divers recovered him, but he was later pronounced dead.

“He was like my everything, I can’t tell a lie…he was my hero,” Akins-Taylor said. “It’s not even day-by-day with us, it’s hour-by-hour. If I’m not having a meltdown, his aunt is having a meltdown, his grandmother is having a meltdown, it’s like everybody is having a meltdown.”

Darling’s family said he knew how to swim and they’re awaiting autopsy results. They said they think somebody should be held accountable.

“Because if you are on a private yacht that’s owned by someone they should be held liable. He should have returned, he went on that boat alive, he should have returned alive,” aunt Tawana Akins said.

Akins-Taylor said her son’s career as a fashion designer was just taking off.

“He always wanted his mom to be happy and always just did everything to make me happy. I had no sad times with Trevon,” she said. “He graduated two years ago. Got his first job, lasted for a month because his designer career took off.”

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