The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

October 3, 2013

Searchers recover body of boater

Herald staff

SANDY LAKE — Searchers have found the body of the man who had been missing since Friday after a boating accident in Sandy Lake.

A rescue crew on Wednesday recovered the body of Jason Mathieson, 29, of Sandy Lake, in the lake where he had been canoeing with two friends. They survived when the canoe capsized at about 5 a.m. Friday.

Chief Rick Reither of Stoneboro Fire Company said friends of Mathieson’s family using an underwater camera spotted his body, which was recovered at about 3:30 p.m. by rescue crews in water 20 feet deep within the initial search area.

The six-day search in the murky waters of the weedy lake began with rescue crews and was taken over by family and friends, Reither said.

Mike Mathieson, the older brother of Jason Mathieson, said Jason had been boating with friends Nicki Heister and Jason Greggs when the canoe capsized.

They stayed together for a while at the canoe before they decided to let go of it and split up and get help, Mathieson said in a Tuesday story in The Herald.

“Nicki said my brother told her he couldn’t make it anymore, that he was just wore out. She said he was floating face down in the water when she went back to him, but he started taking her down with him,” Mathieson said.

Mercer County Coroner J. Bradley McGonigle pronounced Mathieson dead at 4:05 p.m.

His body was taken to Erie for an autopsy scheduled for 10 a.m. today by Dr. Eric Vey, forensic pathologist, McGonigle said.