PORTLAND -- Two brothers at a family gathering at Kelley Point Park drowned late Monday afternoon.
Rescue crews said Kissan Kumar, 24, was swimming in the water at around 5:30 p.m. and began to struggle. His brother, Ram Kumar, 21, went in to help him, and he also disappeared in the water.
Iwas frustrated and didn't want to believe it, said Hira Lal, the victims' uncle.
The two were identified as Jay Kissan Kumar, 21 and Ram Kumar, 24. The boys' parents have been in Fiji attending a funeral for one of their parents. When they return to Oregon, they will bury their sons.
Family members said the boys always had a very special bond. They were so close and they proved it. He [Ram] jumped in the river even though he didn't know how to swim. He still jumped in to save his older brother, said family friend, Praveena Prasad.
Kelley Point Park in North Portland forms the tip of the peninsula at the confluence of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers. The water at the park goes from ankle deep, then a wading depth before suddenly dropping off where the rivers have been dredged for commercial traffic.
They were just up to their waist, five of them, said Robin Robinson, who was there with her family. They were all hanging out, having a good time, laughing and talking amongst each other, but no screaming or flailing around or any sign that anything was wrong.
With warmer weather forecast for the week, many more people sought refuge in Oregon's rivers, prompting warnings from rescuers to know your surroundings. Forecast:Hot week ahead
This is not a good place to come if you don't know how to swim, Portland Fire and Rescue crewman Paul Corah said. It's a beautiful place to be out here, but as you can see it's very shallow and if you go out another 20 feet the channel goes down.
The bodies of both men were found at around 7 p.m., Monday.
Prasad said, like many other people, she admired the brothers.
Everybody knew them, Prasad said, Very good guys, very good guys. It's sad. I'm still shocked, still shocked.
OnSunday, a Forest Grove man died while trying to swim to his boat nearSauvie Island.Details:Sauvie Island drowning