Paddle Boarder Found Dead Was Alone, From New York

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) -A tragic end to the search for a man who disappeared while paddle boarding.

Search crews recovered the body of a man who went missing at Hobie Beach. Miami-Dade Fire Rescue used divers and sonar technology to locate him.

According to investigators, a 911 call was received shortly after 6:40 p.m. on Sunday about a 20-something-year-old man who appeared to have fallen off a paddle board and was struggling in the water.

“I just saw him moving his hands, so we told the guy from the rental place,” said Lourdes Basurto. “One of them was going the same way, he was next to him and in only two minutes he disappeared.”

A witness paddle boarder went out to help but was unable to find the man.

Multiple agencies were called in and conducted a grid search for him as the sun set.

“Multiple agencies responded to the scene. They conducted a search that lasted several hours. Unfortunately, we’ve been informed the body was found and he was deceased. The Miami-Dade Police department’s homicide bureau has taken over the investigation and will work to determine the cause of this accident,” said Miami-Dade Police Det. Argemis Colome.

The beach equipment rental company who rented the items to the man reopened at 12:30 p.m. Monday.

An employee declined to comment on Sunday’s incident.  The manager told CBS4 the victim was alone, and had traveled down from New York.

Rental company policy requires vests only if customers go past 300 feet from shore, which is about five feet deep.

“According to their policy, any time you go out in the water passed the buoy, you are required to wear a life vest,” said Capt. Carroll. “The employees gave him the board, he went out and, according to them, it seems like this person did not know how to swim and they were unaware of that.”

One experienced paddle boarder told CBS4 safety always comes first when he’s on the water.

“I don’t like to go where it’s too deep. If I fall off, I want the water to be below my waist, and if you’re going to go out any further than that, have a life vest,” the man said.

Police have not released the man’s name.

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