Crews searching for missing rafters find body

/ Source: The Associated Press

Crews in Montana have recovered the body of a rafter thrown into a flood-swollen river and continued searching for one of her companions.

The pair were among seven members of a rafting party on the Dearborn River on Sunday. Two of their three rafts capsized; four of the rafters quickly reached land and a fifth had made it onto a riverbank by the time rescuers found him late Sunday night, Lewis and Clark County Sheriff Cheryl Liedle said.

The body was recovered around noon Monday near where rescuers found the survivor, who was treated at a hospital and released, Liedle said. The search for the man still missing was continuing in the Craig area between Helena and Great Falls.

The victim is believed to be to be from Tacoma, Wash., and the survivor and the missing man are from Helena; their names were not released.

The National Weather Service said the Dearborn River at Craig surpassed its flood stage of 6.5 feet on Saturday and reached a peak of 8.5 feet on Sunday at 9:45 p.m. The flow continued to drop on Monday and the river was expected to fall below flood stage around noon on Tuesday, the service said.

A Department of Homeland Security helicopter taking part in the search Sunday night made an emergency landing because the rotor touched a tree, Liedle said. No one was hurt.