The body of an 8-year-old boy who had gone missing Saturday afternoon in Turkey Point, Ont., was found after almost a full day of searching the waters of Lake Erie, according to provincial police.
In an update posted on social media, Acting OPP Sgt. Ed Sanchuk said the OPP’s underwater search and recovery unit located the body about 180 metres away from the shoreline near Cedar Drive in Turkey Point just after 2:30 p.m.
« The identity of the deceased is not being released pending notification of next of kin and I will not be answering any further questions today to give time for the family to grieve, » Sanchuk said.
Provincial police along with the OPP Aviation Services, OPP Marine Unit, Norfolk County Fire Department, Norfolk County Paramedic Services and the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre in Trenton were first called to an address at Cedar Drive in Turkey Point at around 5:30 p.m. Saturday after reports of a missing boy.
Police said the 8-year-old boy was last seen swimming in Lake Erie after abandoning a floating raft and trying to swim back to shore.
« Because we have a large body of water in Lake Erie, depending on the current as well as the waves and the wind, it looks like it’s pushed him quite far down the water and so as a result he abandoned the raft and tried to swim back to shore, » Sanchuk told CBC News earlier on Sunday.
UPDATE – Search continues for <a href= »https://twitter.com/hashtag/missing?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw »>#missing</a> 8 year old boy in the waters of <a href= »https://twitter.com/hashtag/LakeErie?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw »>#LakeErie</a>. Updates will be provided when new information becomes available. <a href= »https://twitter.com/NorfolkCountyCA?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw »>@NorfolkCountyCA</a> <a href= »https://twitter.com/hashtag/NorfolkOPP?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw »>#NorfolkOPP</a> ^es <a href= »https://t.co/h8pD5HCK2T »>pic.twitter.com/h8pD5HCK2T</a>
Crews worked Saturday evening and all day Sunday to locate the missing boy. The OPP’s underwater search and recovery unit arrived to assist with the investigation Sunday morning.
« The family is absolutely devastated, » Sanchuk said during the early hours of the search on Sunday. « It’s really tough on them right now and we’re just working to locate this youngster. »
Sanchuk is reminding people to ensure that any young children wear life jackets and are accompanied by an adult when going to the lake.
« You blink and your kids could be gone in a heartbeat out in the water … Make sure that you’re putting your safety as a priority at all times. »