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CONTACT: Sergeant David P. Walsh, Region Four Office, Keene, NH: 603-352-4022
Update: July 6, 2012

Body of Connecticut River Kayaker Recovered

KEENE, N.H. -- The New Hampshire Fish and Game Dive Team recovered the body of Thomas Howell, 57, of Hinsdale, today in the Connecticut River in Hinsdale, NH. A search was launched yesterday (Thursday, June 5, 2012) for Howell, who was last seen swimming alongside his kayak at approximately 12:30 p.m. near the Prospect Street boat ramp in Hinsdale.  Howell’s body was recovered in fifteen feet of water, approximately 40 yards from where he was last seen by witnesses.  Howell did not have a Personal Flotation Device (PFD).  It is believed that alcohol was a contributing factor.

Report of July 5, 2012

Searchers Look for Missing Connecticut River Kayaker

KEENE, N.H. -- NH Fish and Game Department Conservation Officers responded to the Connecticut River in Hinsdale this afternoon after receiving reports of a missing kayaker.  Thomas Howell, 57, of Hinsdale, went kayaking in the Connecticut River alone this morning.  At approximately 12:30 pm, he was observed swimming alongside his kayak not far from shore.  Within minutes, witnesses said that he disappeared from sight in an area with a strong current from the nearby Vernon Dam. 

Local fire departments and EMS personnel arrived and located his kayak several hundred yards from shore.  Divers from Brattleboro, VT and Northfield, MA Fire Departments searched the immediate area where Howell was last seen but could not locate him.  Conservation Officers and NH Marine Patrol searched an expanded area for several hours.  Howell did not have a Personal Flotation Device (PFD).  It is believed that alcohol was also a contributing factor. 

The N.H. Fish and Game Department’s Dive Team will return to the river tomorrow (July 6, 2012).

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