Mother of drowning victim has message for Craig youth |

Mother of drowning victim has message for Craig youth

Patrick Kelly
Trystan Campbell, 18, is pictured with his mother April Chavira-Montieth.
file photo

The mother of a young man who recently drowned in the Yampa River near Loudy-Simspon Park is hoping Craig’s youth can learn from her son’s tragedy.

April Chavira-Montieth is convinced her 18-year-old son Trystan Campbell would not have drown on July 8 if alcohol had been not been involved.

“Trystan went out to have a fun afternoon and it ended in tragedy because they wanted to drink and the end result is my son died,” Chavira-Montieth said.

A toxicology report preformed at The Memorial Hospital shows Campbell had a blood alcohol content of .287 percent around 5 p.m. on the day of the accident.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, a blood alcohol content between .16 and .30 percent can cause impaired decision making, reduced coordination and loss of consciousness.

Above a .30 percent, life-threatening complications from alcohol poisoning like loss of vital life functions become a major concern.

No other drugs were present in his system.

Chavira-Montieth said her son was strong swimmer who had been floating the river everyday the week he passed and alcohol consumption had to play a factor the day of his death.

“I believe he wouldn’t have drown if he hadn’t been intoxicated,” she said.

Campbell, who was going into his senior year at Moffat County High School, passed away at University Hospital in Denver after being pulled from the Yampa River by first responders on July 8. He originally was taken to The Memorial Hospital of Craig and was later transported to Denver where he was taken off of life support July 9.

“Even if he had survived the drowning, if he would have woken up, he would have never have been the same,” Chavira-Montieth said she was told by doctors.

Chavira-Montieth is also working with police to try and figure out who purchased alcohol for her underage son.

“I’m very upset,” she said. “In my eyes, my son is dead because somebody bought him alcohol and who ever did it will pay. I will make sure they go to jail.”

Chavira-Montieth said she is confident that perpetrator will be caught eventually and she hopes other kids may think twice before drinking underage.

“I just want other kids to know that they shouldn’t be drinking,” she said. “Every time somebody wants to take a drink of alcohol — I want them to think of where my son is.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, excessive drinking is responsible for more than 4,300 deaths among underage youth each year, and cost the U.S. $24 billion in economic costs in 2010.

Contact Patrick Kelly at 970-875-1795 or Contact Patrick Kelly at 970-875-1795 or or follow him on Twitter @M_PKelly.Contact Patrick Kelly at 970-875-1795 or or follow him on Twitter @M_PKelly.

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