Family: Man electrocuted after jumping into Lake Lanier remembered as 'gentle and kind'

A 24-year-old man is dead after jumping off a dock into Lake Lanier near Lanier Beach South Road on Thursday, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

DNR says the man was electrocuted. A neighbor pulled the man from the water, says DNR. The man was taken to Northside Forsyth Hospital where he later died.

The Forsyth County Sheriff's Office has identified the deceased as Thomas Shepard Milner. They say Milner entered the water from his family dock and was heard screaming for help shortly after.

Lake Lanier

A family friend attempted to get him out of the water but was unsuccessful.

Neighbors reportedly took a boat over to Milner and one person jumped into the water to help him. That person later described a burning sensation that he recognized as electrical shock. He swam ashore, turned off the power, and re-entered the water to help Thomas.

After Milner was pulled back onto the dock, his uncle gave him CPR until first responders arrived.


Writing to FOX 5, Shepard's mother Martha Milner said that her son grew up at the lake and loved everything water.

"Shepard loved the lake," she wrote. "Most every week he would spend his day off riding the jet ski, swimming or just snoozing on the dock to some music."

The 24-year-old loved music and would host a Dungeons and Dragons group at the lake house every Wednesday.

Thomas Shephard Milner (courtesy of his family)

Milner described her son as gentle, kind, loving and accepting.

"He didn’t care what your beliefs were; politically, racially, sexually.  Everyone was equal in his eyes," she said.

She said that the dock was less than 3 years old and had been outfitted with electricity by a licensed electrician.

The family is planning a Celebration of Life ceremony for Milner starting at 12:30 p.m. on Aug. 5 at Reformation Brewery in Canton. 


 Most every week he would spend his day off riding the jet ski, swimming or just snoozing on the dock to some music.


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