Body Found Floating in American River Near Auburn

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The body of a man was found floating in the American River near Auburn on Sunday. It was a rescue mission turned recovery mission.

“When we located him, we tried to revive him, and that was unsuccessful. So he was determined deceased,” said Cal Fire Battalion Chief Jake Sjolund.

At around 12:30 Sunday, Cal Fire got a call about a person floating face down in the American River in Auburn, near the confluence.

They were told the man came from the Middle Fork area, but was last seen near No Hands Bridge.
With little access to the river, investigators said the mission was extremely difficult.

Local hikers said while this area is beautiful, mother nature can be powerful.

“Hiking is safe, but the river, I know especially now with the water being so high with all the rain and the runoff, it can be very dangerous,” hiker George Sinclair said.

It was dangerous and difficult for boaters and rescuers alike. In the span of an hour, they strategically used aerial, land and water teams to recover the body.

“We moved two rescuers by helicopter up onto a sandbar, and we were able to position him close to the victim when we first got sight of him. Meanwhile, we started the raft at the same time, to come down river, and then the helicopter was able to relocate, and we were able to reposition our swimmers to go out and get him,” Sjolund said.

A state parks representative said the man was in his 40s. Investigators still do not know his identity nor his circumstances of death.

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