Troopers find boat, victim in near-freezing water

10 months 6 days 7 hours ago January 29, 2016 Jan 29, 2016 Friday, January 29 2016 Friday, January 29, 2016 2:23:00 PM CST in News
By: Matt Johnson, KOMU 8 Content Manager and Paxton DiBlasi, KOMU 8 Reporter

SUNRISE BEACH (Updated 11:34 p.m.)- Troopers with the Missouri State Highway Patrol found the body Friday of a person who had gone missing in the Lake of the Ozarks. MSHP said troopers also found the boat the person had been operating.

Troopers found the body Rick Steffey, 48, of Homer, Illinois at 6:14 p.m. Sgt. Scott White said search teams found the body near the boat, and the bow of the boat was pointed straight up. 

Earlier Friday, troopers were using sonar and a dive team to search the lake.

White said troopers were also trying to locate the victim's boat which they said sunk somewhere around the 18.5 mile marker of the lake near Sunrise Beach at 11:18 a.m. Troopers were setting up a command post on the Shawnee Bend side of the lake just north of the Grand Glaze Bridge off Highway 54.

Sgt. White said he believed there was just one victim, but would not rule out the possiblity others could have been on board the boat.

White said preliminary information via sonar helped one of the searchers locate an 18 foot recreational boat but it had yet to be pulled from the lake.

White said troopers took a water temperature of 39 degrees, which he said is concerning given it is barely above freezing and could certainly limit or prevent normal bodily functions.  

The map below shows the search area. The map is courtesy of the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitor's Bureau.

[Editor's note: This story has been updated to include the latest information.]

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