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Published: Wednesday, 7/19/2006

Body recovered from Lake Erie may be missing Toledo fisherman

BLADE STAFF

The body of an unidentified male was recovered from Lake Erie this morning less than four miles southwest of West Sister Island, near where a 25-year-old Toledo man is feared to have drowned Saturday during a fishing trip.

Steve Kahle, an investigator with the Lucas County coroner s office, said identification of the body has not been completed. Once that is completed, family must be notified.

The U.S. Coast Guard received a call at 7:29 a.m. today about a body found floating in the water. The body was recovered by the Coast Guard at 9:02 a.m., Mr. Kahle said.

Odell Scott of Toledo disappeared Saturday and is believed to have drowned while on a fishing trip with two other men in the waters near West Sister Island, located about 12 miles north of the Davis-Besse nuclear power plant.

A Coast Guard helicopter and two boats searched for Mr. Scott for some 13 hours before the search was called off about 9 a.m. Sunday.

Authorities were notified of the apparent drowning almost two hours after it occurred, apparently because the other men with Mr. Scott did not have a mobile phone or a radio on their boat and traveled about 20 miles back to their marina to call for help.

Donald Bork, 63, told authorities the three men were fishing about 500 yards off West Sister Island when the wake of a boat caused Mr. Scott to fall in the water. Mr. Bork said he and Jack Snyder, 36, jumped into the water, but they were unable to find Mr. Scott.

Mr. Snyder, however, according to reports, said Mr. Scott had jumped into the water to swim while the men were fishing. When they realized they had not seen him in a while, they jumped into the water to look for him, but were unsuccessful, according to reports.

The men, including Mr. Scott, were thought by authorities to have been intoxicated when Mr. Scott entered the water, according to reports received by Scott Giard, controller for the U.S. Coast Guard station in Detroit. It was unclear from reports how long the men looked for Mr. Scott before returning to their marina to call for help.

Read more in later editions of The Blade and toledoblade.com.



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