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Pike divers assist with recovery of body near Alvaton

Pike divers, members of the Spalding-Pike County Underwater Evidence Team, assisted Sunday with the recovery of the body of an as yet unidentified man who drowned in a farm pond near Alvaton after a fishing mishap. Captain Tony Ranieri of the Spalding County sheriff’s office, issued this news release on the incident Sunday afternoon: On Saturday 01/23/10 the Meriweather County Sheriff’s Office and Emergency Management Agency contacted the Spalding Pike County Underwater Evidence Team to request the team be placed on stand by to assist with the recovery of a possible drowning victim. According to Captain Tony Ranieri commander of the Dive Team, the victim was fishing with another person on a private lake located off of Swaggert Road about 2 miles North of Alvaton on Ga Hwy 85N. The information we received was that a seat broke on the fishing boat they were in, and the first fisherman fell into the water, causing the victim to fall out of the boat. The first fisherman was able to grab the falling seat and stay afloat, and swim to shore, the second fisherman (victim) was not able to hold anything and succumbed to the frigid water temperature. The Dive Team set up operations around 0900 hours on Sunday morning and within an hour after placing divers in the water was able to recover the body of the victim. The divers dealt with the frigid temperatures of the water, wind and rain and succeeded with the mission they were task with in a professional manner. Sheriff Stewart praised the hard work of the dive team. This was an investigation in another jurisdiction and the victim cannot be identified by this agency, said Stewart. We had alot of support from the Meriweather County Sheriff’s Office, Meriweather County Fire Department, EMS and EMA, everyone worked together to help with closure for the family said Stewart.

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