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Water teams search for missing canoeist in McKenzie River

UPDATE: Deputies said they have identified the owner of the canoe as of Tuesday morning. They're in contact with his family. His name will not be released until he is found.

Posted: May 28, 2018 9:25 PM
Updated: May 29, 2018 6:44 PM

UPDATE: Deputies said they have identified the owner of the canoe as of Tuesday morning. They're in contact with his family. His name will not be released until he is found.

"We are still actively searching for him on the waterways. Search and Rescue is out there on the boats, Lane County Sheriff's Marine Patrol deputies are out there, and Eugene Springfield Fire is out there looking on the water for him, and very, very hopeful to find him alive," said Lane County Sheriff's Office PIO, Carrie Carver.

Neighbors of the area said these kinds of incidents are not uncommon, and they want to urge everyone to remember their safety before entering the water because it could save their lives.

"It's not a swimming pool and it's not a pond," said Carmelita Cross, a Hayden Bridge resident.

Carver reminded people that the water is still cold, so even if you think you're a good enough swimmer, you still need that life jacket.
She also encouraged using the buddy system, letting people know where you're going to be, and being prepared for everything. The snags and twists in the water change all the time.

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- Crews suspended their search for a missing canoeist near the Hayden Bridge boat ramp on Monday night, but the effort will resume Tuesday morning.

Officials say the man fell out of his canoe around 6:30 p.m. A witness told investigators that she saw a man's head go underwater and not resurface.

Another witness told KEZI 9 News that he heard a "yelp" and saw an older man going underwater.

It's not known if the man was wearing a life jacket.

"We always want to remind folks to always be wearing a lifejacket whenever you're out on the water," Deputy Tim Chase said. "It's a very important piece of safety equipment and you never know when something's going to happen where you might end up in the water, so having that life jacket on is very important."

The identity of the missing man was not known by authorities as of Monday night.

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