BURKE COUNTY (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — Deputies say they were called on April 21st about a woman having an asthma attack while swimming in Lake James.

The call was near the Canal Bridge Boat Access for Lake James near the Burke and McDowell County line. Witnesses say a woman jumped into the water and, after a few minutes, she started to feel unwell. Her fiance knowing that she suffers from asthma gave her an inhaler while she was still in the water.

Deputies identified the woman as 27-year-old Hannah Walker. They say that Walker was in worse shape after using her inhaler and fell unconscious. Witnesses tried to pull Walker out of the water but struggled because of how high their pontoon boat was. Walker’s fiance and a friend tried to get the boat to shore. Someone noticed what was going on and called 911.

Deputies say a Burke County officer assigned to the lake arrived by boat and helped guide the pontoon boat to the boat access. First responders tried to save Walker’s life but were unsuccessful.

Investigators say they processed the scene and a death investigation is ongoing as deputies wait for an autopsy to be done.

Deputies say Hannah Walker was from Asheville. Her fiance, 5-year-old son, and 5-week-old daughter, as well as the fiance’s friend all were there as it happened.