Body found in Eau Claire River identified as missing canoeist - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Body found in Eau Claire River identified as missing canoeist

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PHOTO: WQOW-TV PHOTO: WQOW-TV

ALTOONA (WQOW) - The body of a canoeist missing since Thursday was found in the Eau Claire River. Altoona fire crews recovered the body of 21 year old Karter Riley Fitzgerald of Wausau Saturday afternoon.

Crews started rescue efforts after 7:00 A.M. Saturday morning. With the help of a helicopter and phone call from an angler, they were able to locate the body in the afternoon.

According to the Altoona Assistant Fire Chief Jason Knecht, "It was a fisherman that spotted him, and called 9-1-1. At the same time I was in contact with Mayo One and they were telling me the same thing. So we coordinated the two different locations and did a quick search and found him."

The body was recovered near the Eau Claire Country Club between River Prairie Drive and Hastings Way. Rescue boats and crews walked the shoreline of the Eau Claire River down to Birch Street.

The Altoona Fire Department says fast water currents pushed the body two and a half miles downstream from the Altoona dam.

The Altoona Police Chief Jesse James released a statement saying: "Many hours and a lot of effort were put in for this recovery to take place. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time."

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