Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Body Of Missing Fisherman Recovered

The body of Larry Wayne Thomas was recovered at 5:05pm Tuesday afternoon.  Mr. Thomas's boat was discovered on Dec. 20th spinning out of control near the Highway 43 bridge.   

Rescue teams have been searching the area as weather permitted.

Randy Newell,  with the Mississippi Department of Wildlife Fisheries and Parks, told TRN Mr. Thomas was located about a quarter of a mile north of the 43 bridge in water approximately 20ft deep.  According to officials Mr. Thomas was wearing a pull type inflatable life preserver but it had not been deployed. 

Help in the recovery came from an unlikely source - a volunteer from Monticello, Buddy French.  Buddy heard news of the possible drowning and drove to the reservoir on Christmas Eve to help.

Buddy has the latest sidescan sonar installed on his boat and has used it 4 other times to help authorities locate drowning victims.

He scanned the search area several hours on Saturday then headed home to Monticello.  Monday night he reviewed the data accumulated from Saturday's search and noticed an image that could have been a body.   

Buddy called his employer and asked for the day off so he could return to the reservoir and share the info with the search teams.   The teams used Buddy's info to narrow their search and eventually located the victim.  

During the search efforts Tuesday afternoon a Reservoir Patrol boat overturned throwing 6 searchers into the chilly waters.  One official told us the boat began taking on water after a dive door was opened, the extra weight of the water caused the Boston Whaler to capsize.  None of the passengers on the Reservoir boat were injured.  

Seatow was called to rescue the rescue boat.  They managed to get it upright and towed to the ramp.

After numerous attempts the boat was loaded on a trailer and removed from the water.

The Rez News
Barnett Reservoir


Anonymous said...

The Rez Patrol needs some lessons on what not to do in regards to searching for bodies.

Anonymous said...

Bless Mr. French for sharing his equipment that eventually found Mr. Thomas. I'm originally from Monticello myself, and there are some wonderfully compassionate people in Lawrence County.

Rest in peace, Mr. Thomas. God bless your family during what had to have been an awful ordeal.

Anonymous said...

Many Thanks to Mr Randy from the Team BCx2 bass club......

Anonymous said...

I saw where Hayles Towing had a 75 ton rotater truck and 4 guys at the boat ramp extracting the boat after sea tow flipped it back over. I must admit seeing that truck in action was quite impressive!

Anonymous said...

Glad they found him,RIP
75 ton rotater truck? Wow thats a big truck,Ive seen them at the Cock of the Walk boat ramp lot before.It was so heavy it made tire indentions in the asphalt.