Man’s Body Recovered From Cherry Creek Reservoir A Week After Boating Accident

CHERRY CREEK STATE PARK, Colo. (CBS4) – Search and rescue personnel pulled the body of a 29-year-old man from Cherry Creek Reservoir on Saturday, a week after the man slipped from an inner tube being pulled by a boat and failed to resurface.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife stated in a Twitter message that its Marine Evidence Recovery Team had located and recovered the man’s body with the help of personnel and equipment from South Metro Fire Rescue.

(credit: Colorado Parks & Wildlife/Twitter)

The agency stated it suspected the man drowned, but the official cause of death will be determined by the Arapahoe County Coroner’s Office.

That same office will also release the man’s identity after his family members have been notified of the recovery.

Grant Brown, CPW's Boating Safety Program Manager, shows us the ROV Pro V the Marine Evidence Recovery Team uses in water recovery operations. The ROV (remote operated vehicle) uses sonar, lights, video cameras and a manipulator in searches.

— CPW NE Region (@CPW_NE) May 8, 2022

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The reservoir re-opened to recreational boating activity Friday morning. It had been closed since Sunday.

Authorities were alerted to the man’s disappearance at approximately 7 p.m. last Saturday.

Initial search efforts concentrated in water depths of 15 feet about 300 yards from the marina on the reservoir’s west end. Airborne and underwater drones were used.

A member of the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office launches a drone in an effort to search for a missing man May 7th at Cherry Creek Reservoir. (credit: CBS)

What started as a search was changed to a recovery operation when the man was not found in the first 90 minutes of searching. He was reportedly not wearing a life jacket.

“In a situation like this, our No.1 priority is to bring the victim back to the family,” said Jim Hawkins, leader of CPW’s Marine Evidence Recovery Team. “It is the families that keep us going during these recovery operations. This is very technical work that requires skill and experience. Not every recovery is the same and these searches are dynamic, but a well coordinated team effort among all agencies led to the recovery.”

Additional assistance during the week-long effort came from the Summit County and Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Offices, CPW Park Rangers, the American Red Cross, Search and Rescue Dogs of the United States, and two fishing guides from Tightline Outdoors who volunteered to help with the search by running their own sonar units.