Body of missing boater found in James River

Body of missing boater found in James River

CHARLES CITY COUNTY, Va. (WWBT) - The body of a 68-year-old man was pulled from the James River on Monday.

Lindsey Brown, 68, of Chesterfield, was reported missing Sunday after he fell out of his friend’s boat in Charles City County. A witness said Brown fell off the boat near Herring Creek, went under the water and never came up.

For hours on Monday, Brown’s family gathered by the docks of Lawrence Lewis Junior Park, waiting for any word from investigators on what happened to him.

“He fell off the boat while fishing. I don’t want to speculate that he tripped and all, but we don’t have any foul play investigation going on. We’ll thoroughly inspect everything, investigate everything," said Capt. Milton Robinson of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

Around 5:45 p.m. Sunday, the Charles City County Sheriff’s Office received calls of a man overboard. Rescue teams searched the waters Sunday evening, and again Monday morning.

Robinson said crews had to use sonar because of the poor visibility under water.

The Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries said Brown’s body was found about 20 feet from the shore in 8 feet of water. He was not wearing a life jacket.

Charles City Sheriff’s Chaplain Burrell Smith said throughout the search the family tried to remain hopeful.

“They were saying that he was doing what he loved to do," Smith said. "He liked to fish and hunt, and he was with a friend. They’re here for each other.”

Robinson couldn’t comment if Brown’s boat had a life jacket, but said this incident is a stark reminder to be careful on the water.

“Always wear a personal flotation device, always have a throwable cushion in case someone falls off you can immediately assist them. Check your boat before you go out, and always take a boat safety course," he said.

Officials from several jurisdictions, including Chesterfield and Henrico were involved in the search.

Conservation police said an autopsy will be performed and continue to investigate.

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