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Police Release Name Of Great Miami River Victim

Posted On April 09, 2014

By Mike Perleberg

(Miamitown, Oh.) – Police have identified a man who went missing in the Great Miami River near Miamitown last Friday.

According to The Cincinnati Enquirer, Van Guthrie, 76, was reportedly witnessed jumping or falling from the Interstate 74 bridge into the flooded river.

Guthrie, of Sharonville, Ohio, has yet to be located. After several witnesses saw him go into the water, a large search effort involving water rescue crews, a helicopter, and a planned bridge-based rescue ensued. The water-based search was scaled back after a few hours because of strong winds and river currents.

Miami and Whitewater Township fire departments – the two agencies leading the search effort – have not been on the water to search the Great Miami this week because of the continuing hazardous conditions on the rain-swollen river. However, those first responders have continued to search for Guthrie from the shoreline, Miami Township Fire Chief Steve Ober told The Enqurier.

“Every day we do a land search,” Ober said. “What we are really waiting for is for river conditions to get better so divers can get in there. So far, it hasn’t been safe to do that.”

Ober said that cadaver dogs and sonar have indicated that Guthrie could possibly be in the area of the U.S. 50 bridge in Cleves, a few miles downstream from the I-74 bridge.

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