Efforts are still underway to locate the body of a man — believed to be a local resident — who fell in the river and was swept away early Wednesday afternoon during a drinking party at the boat launch.
“The victim and witnesses were along the shore line of the boat launch consuming alcohol and enjoying the warm weather,” RCMP Staff Sgt Kurt Grabinsky told The Revelstoke Current on Thursday morning.
“It is reported that the male victim lost his balance and fell into the river. The river was running quickly and the male was swept into the current. The male is approximately 69 years of age, was wearing a blue shirt and jeans and glasses. Witnesses attempted to enter the water, however, were unsuccessful in assisting the victim.”
He said that while the man’s body has not been found, Mounties are pretty sure they know his identity although they are not releasing it publicly until they have located members of his family.
“At this… we continue focusing our energies on a visual search of the Columbia River,” he said. “SAR continues to deploy resources where possible and the RCMP helicopter is returning today to continue a search of the Columbia River from Centennial Park to Arrow Lake.”
There were two witnesses to the incident. SAR, police, ambulance and fire personnel all tried to find the man in the water.
“Police attended and patrolled the shoreline, as well as launched the police boat and requested the RCMP helicopter from Kelowna. SAR was activated and patrolled the shore from Centennial Park to 12 Mile,” Staff Sgt. Kurt Grabinsky said Thursday morning. “Following over three hours of searching the missing male was not located.
“The name of the missing male has not been released as efforts are being made to notify his family. Friends in Revelstoke have been made aware of the incident.”
Grabinsky said alcohol may have played a role in this incident.
“The victim and witnesses were along the shore line of the boat launch consuming alcohol and enjoying the warm weather,” he said.
The RCMP is thankful to BC Hydro for assisting in this search by reducing the water flow in the Columbia River, providing an improved opportunity to scour the shoreline and other river features.
Further updates will be provided when available.