Authorities Identify Texas Man Who Drowned in Buffalo River

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Search teams recovered the body of a 27-year-old man from the Buffalo River on Sunday afternoon.

Newton County rescue officials identified the man as Stephen A. Carney of Austin, Texas.

Carney’s body was located underwater at approximately 3:54 p.m. Sunday within 600 feet of the area he had disappeared Friday. Carney failed to resurface after diving off a 25-foot bluff into 10 feet of water Friday.

Caven Clark, the public information officer for the Buffalo River National Park, said search teams with the National Park Service and Newton County Sheriff’s Office conducted a “real concentrated sweep” downstream of where the man disappeared. Clark said because of log jams created by rising water in previous days, search teams were confident the man’s body had not gone far downstream.

Members of the Harrison Fire Department recovered the body after being alerted by members of the Mennonite Disaster Service Search and Rescue team, which was using sonar to locate objects underwater.

Clark said the man was with friends at an area known as Charcoal Fields just downstream of Erbie. The search had been delayed and then suspended Saturday because of high water, zero visibility and debris in the water.

Glenn Wheeler, the coordinator of Newton County’s Search and Rescue team, said seven agencies participated in the search.

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