A California teenager, who tragically lost his life while attempting to save his younger brother from a turbulent river, is being fondly remembered for his compassionate nature and brave actions.
The Sacramento Fire Department (SFD) reported that on Sunday, the young boy named Amari, along with two others, entered the Sacramento River to retrieve a football. However, Amari soon noticed his 13-year-old brother Elijah struggling in the water and valiantly attempted to rescue him.
Amidst the harrowing ordeal, their mother, Yolanda Sashe, also entered the water in a desperate effort to save her children. Despite reaching Amari, she was unable to bring him to safety. Yolanda vividly recalled the heartbreaking moment when she saw Amari’s hands slip away from her grasp, as something pulled him under, forever separating them.
While a nearby boater managed to rescue two of the swimmers, one victim was tragically swept away. Sonar technology eventually located the lifeless body of the missing teenager in the river, confirmed by the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office as Amari Quarles.
Amari’s father, James Sashe, expressed his son’s heroism in a GoFundMe page created for their family, acknowledging that Amari had recently moved to California to be closer to their relatives. He also shared that Amari excelled academically as a straight-A student at Natomas High School.
The Natomas Unified School District paid tribute to Amari in a Facebook post, providing a link to the family’s GoFundMe page and expressing their profound sorrow at the loss of one of their students. They emphasized the tragic nature of the incident and appealed for support for the grieving family.
SFD Captain Justin Sylvia acknowledged the challenging conditions of the Sacramento River, including high water levels, frigid temperatures, and strong currents during this time of year.
He explained that the rescue swimmers had to frequently rotate during the search, as the demanding current made the task physically exhausting.
As of Wednesday morning, the generous contributions of over $17,000 have been raised for the family, offering some assistance during this difficult time.