Two bodies were recovered yesterday from Maumee Bay. One was the 12-year-old boy last seen Monday fishing with his father, and the other was confirmed to be his father, authorities said.
The body of Shondale Galloway II was found about 10:20 a.m. tangled in his fishing line near a sand bar about 100 feet from shore where the water depth varies from 4 to 8 feet, Toledo Assistant Fire Chief Luis Santiago said.
The sand bar is near the tip of the peninsula that extends off Cullen Park in Point Place.
"It's possible that the person tripped, panicked a little bit, got entangled, and drowned," Chief Santiago said.
The search for the boy's father, Shondale Galloway, 33, was suspended about 4 p.m. yesterday.
Fire Chief Mike Wolever said he stopped the search for the father to keep divers and boat operators from making errors as a result of exhaustion.
"Pretty soon, you start to make mistakes and we can't afford mistakes in that environment," he said.
Then about 7:20 last night, a tug boat captain radioed the U.S. Coast Guard station at Bay View Park to report a body in the shipping channel.
The body was recovered on the east side of the channel, about two miles from shore, Coast Guard PO Josh Shirey.
There was no identification on the body, but the clothing matched the description of what Mr. Galloway was wearing, said Charlie Hunt, an investigator with the said Lucas County Coroner's Office.
The coroner's office was expected to conduct autopsies today.
Chief Wolever said last night, after he learned that a man's body was found, that he was "reasonably comfortable that the victim was not found where we were searching. [Divers] covered the entire span of the area we were searching very thoroughly."
He said that a freighter came through yesterday, and "they displace so much water, and so any time they go through the shipping channel it affects the direction the water [is] moving and the condition [of] the water."
Mr. Galloway and his son were last seen some time Monday standing chest-deep in the Maumee Bay, casting their fishing lines out in the area between Grassy Island and Point Place.
The search began about 7:30 p.m. Monday after Marquitia Galloway returned to her family's makeshift campsite, found her two younger sons alone in a tent, and called police.
Mr. Galloway and the couple's three sons spent Sunday night camping at the tip of the park's peninsula and were expected home Monday evening.
Chief Wolever said the sand bar near where the boy was found extends several hundred feet from shore, and is a popular place for fishermen.
He said the father and son were likely able to walk about 150 to 200 feet from the shore before they were chest-deep in the water.
What makes the area dangerous, the chief said, is that there is no indication that there is a drop-off.
Chief Wolever said he plans to recommend that the city, which owns the man-made peninsula, put up signs notifying people of the potential dangers to "keep this from happening again."
He said other people have drowned in that area.
Mrs. Galloway said her husband and son knew how to swim.
But Chief Wolever said swimming skills become almost useless if a person begins panicking. As a person struggles to keep their head above water, they burn viable oxygen, their buoyancy changes, and they start to sink, he said.
"Once a person in the water panics, their actions usually are not effective," Chief Wolever said. "You might get lucky and survive, but usually your thought process doesn't kick in to do purposeful things."
Chief Wolever, who created and at one point headed the department's dive team, speculated that the father or son may have slipped and went under the water and the other tried to help.
The young boy, wearing a red T-shirt with the words 'Superhero' across it, was found in the water with his fishing pole on the outside of his arm, said Bob Hannon, an investigator with the coroner's office.
Mr. Hannon said it's unclear whether the boy became entangled in the fishing line prior to drowning or if the line became wrapped around his body after he sank.
After her son's body was found, Mrs. Galloway said she continued to pray yesterday and shed many tears. But knowing he'd been found provided some closure, she said.
"God let me know a long time ago he was a gift. All children are gifts," Mrs. Galloway said.
"I know his spirit is with God so I'm content."
Staff writer Mike Sigov contributed to this report.
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