Missing NC kayaker found dead near Haw River

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Wildlife officers say the body of a 21-year-old man that went under water at Saxapahaw Lake in Alamance County Sunday night has been found.

Joseph Smith of Graham was found around noon Monday in the area near the Haw River.

A witness reported seeing a kayaker go under water at Saxapahaw Lake Paddle access point in Graham shortly after 6 p.m. Sunday.


According to Public Information Officer Kirk Puckett, four people were believed to have been in or around the kayak before it tipped over. None of the four were wearing life jackets.

Smith was trying to swim back to safety, but went under and didn’t resurface.

Rescue efforts started back up Monday at 6 a.m. after an initial search for several hours Sunday night.


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