Teen model drowns in popular Missouri river, officials say. ‘Our sweet, spirited Kara’

A teen model drowned while swimming in a popular Missouri river, officials say.

Kara Wrice, 16, who was remembered as “sweet” and “spirited” by her modeling agency, drowned Friday afternoon while swimming in the Meramec River in St. Louis County, officials said.

“We are heartbroken. Devastated. She was cherished. A truly special girl and an important part of Mother,” Mother Model Management posted on Instagram.

The agency is credited with discovering actor Ashton Kutcher, former Victoria’s Secret model Karlie Kloss and other top talent.

Kara’s father, Karl Wrice, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that his daughter had been drinking at Castlewood State Park before she went underwater and didn’t resurface. She was caught in a current, police said.

Wrice said he and Kara’s mother didn’t know their daughter was at the park until she went missing in the river, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

“She was a straight-A student,” Wrice told the newspaper. “She was also a teenager who made a very not-good decision.”

Kara was a student at Webster Groves High School and Assistant Principal John Thomas was a neighbor of the Wrice family, KMOV reported.

“She is a wonderful student,” Thomas told KMOV. “She is the exact kid that every parent would want their kid to be.”

Mother Model Management discovered Kara during a Charlie Puth concert in 2018 and she joined the agency a year later.

“She was young but stood out to us in the crowd as she walked by,” Mother Model Management posted on Instagram last year. “When Kara came in the first time, she was quiet and soft spoken, but we quickly found that she was really a fireball full of personality. This girl is comfortable in her own skin, brimming with confidence, full of energy and such a natural when it comes to modeling.”

Kara is survived by her parents and three brothers, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

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