GRAND LAKE STREAM – The body of a 47-year-old Tuscarora, Pa., man missing since October was found Tuesday afternoon about three miles from the point where he went into the water.
On Oct. 12, Patrick Dowling was in a motorboat with a fishing companion when a wave hit their boat and tossed both men into the water.
Sgt. David Craven of the Maine Warden Service said Tuesday that the body that washed ashore was believed to be Dowling’s.
He said the state Medical Examiner’s Office in Augusta would examine the body and make a positive identification.
Wardens were making their way Tuesday to the area of Little Mayberry Cove, in Western Grand Lake, about three miles south of where Dowling went into the water. Recovery of the body was hampered because a portion of the lake was frozen.
Craven said the wardens could not launch their boat from the town landing and would have to launch from an alternate site.
After the two men were tossed into the water, Dowling’s companion, Randy Emerich, 47, of Orwigsburg, Pa., swam more than a mile and a half to safety. Neither man was wearing a life jacket, but there were life jackets inside the boat.
The empty boat, with the motor still running, continued across the lake and eventually ran out of gas nearly two miles from where the men went into the water.
Divers working in shifts searched for the missing man for days, and a plane performed a grid search of the 14,000-acre lake but found nothing.
The searchers found it difficult to pinpoint where the accident occurred because the boat continued to run after the men fell out.
On Tuesday, Warden Service pilot Charles Later, who was flying in the area, decided to begin a new search.
He spotted Dowling’s body around 1 p.m. The Maine Warden Service was notifying Dowling’s next of kin late Tuesday.
Contacted shortly after the accident, Mark Voydik, a friend of Dowling’s, said Dowling worked as a lab technician for Alcoa Inc., He said Dowling was single and did not have any children.
Voydik said Dowling loved to fish.
Craven said the nearly two-month delay in finding the body was not unusual.
“We’re glad for the family’s sake and everybody involved. We were glad he could be recovered before the lake completely iced in,” he said.