The bodies of Lotus drummer Chuck Morris and his son have been recovered
The bodies of Chuck Morris, a musician best known as the drummer for the band Lotus, and his son Charley were recovered while kayaking in Arkansas 24 days after the couple disappeared, authorities confirmed on Sunday.
The Benton County Sheriff’s Office began searching for Morris and his son after they were reported missing March 16 to the Benton County Sheriff’s Office called.
Authorities said the bodies were recovered thanks to technology and efforts by the Carroll County Mennonite Disaster Service and the Tennessee-based Christian Aid Ministries Search and Rescue Team, who used remotely operated underwater vehicles in a “challenging environment” that passed depths of 180 feet .
“Sheriff Holloway, along with Chuck and Charley’s family, would like to thank all of the men and women who donated their time and effort to bring the family to closure and to recover the two missing men,” the sheriff’s office said.
“Our hearts go out to the family of Chuck and Charley Morris, and today we are grateful to be able to help bring about the closure,” the sheriff’s office said.
The couple went missing in mid-March while kayaking on Beaver Lake, a reservoir in the state’s northwest corner, prompting extensive recovery efforts to begin.
According to Benton County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Lt. Shannon Jenkins, the effort included dive crews, boats, dogs and more from multiple agencies.
But days after the search, the operation turned into a recovery operation.
“This lake presents a serious search challenge, but we’re doing what we can,” said Tony Wade, chief of operations for Cajun Coast Search and Rescue CBS Colorado.
The water temperature in the lake had dropped to 30 to 40 degrees in the days after the kayakers went missing, CBS Colorado reported. Humans can only survive a maximum of about 90 minutes in water between 35 and 40 degrees US Coast Guard Auxiliary.
“You would be in shock right away,” Wade said. “This is 100% recovery.”
Within days of the disappearance, other members of Lotus said they feared Morris and his son were dead.
“We were all hoping for a miracle, but at this point the search for Chuck & Charley has bounced back. With the help of the K9 teams, there is a likely location at the lake, but logistical challenges such as temperature, weather and depth have so far prevented a recovery,” according to the band wrote on Twitter on 21.
“While we deeply mourn, we plan to celebrate the lives of Chuck and Charley, our memories with them and what they meant to so many people,” the band added.
– Emily Mae Czachor contributed to the coverage.
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