Mississipi River search resumes; 2 men still missing

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by Daniel Mueller / KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on April 7, 2013 at 8:58 AM

Updated Friday, Dec 6 at 6:04 PM

Missouri-Mississippi Confluence

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(KMOV.com) -- Officials say the search for two missing men has become a recovery mission after a small boat capsized near the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers on Saturday afternoon.

Rescue crews were back in the water on a specialized boat and two other sonar boats Sunday morning around 9 a.m. A diving team was also called in to assist with the search. Recovery operations ended at nightfall, but were expected to resume Monday morning.

Authorities said the boat capsized on the Mississippi River near Hartford, Ill. around 1 p.m. Saturday afternoon.

Two men and a 10-year-old boy people were inside the boat when it overturned, throwing them into the river. Police said the boy was pulled from the river by barge workers, but the boy's 49-year-old stepfather and a 60-year-old man remain missing.

Police said the men were friends from Bellefontaine Neighbors. The boy was treated at a local hospital and later released.

St. Charles County, Missouri Highway Patrol and Hartford, Ill. police worked with firefighters and the U.S. Coast Guard to conduct an extensive search on the river.

Hartford fire officials said the search will continue until the two men are found.

Rescue crews said wind gusts up to 40 miles per hour made for dangerous conditions on the river Saturday. Officials did not say whether wind caused the boat to overturn.

Approximately 20 firefighters walked the riverfront from Hartford to the Chain of Rocks Bridge on Sunday afternoon. Recovery crews also expanded their search to Chouteau Island, located about a mile south of the confluence.

A staging area for the search was established in Hartford, located about seven miles south of Alton along the Mississippi River.

The families of the missing men have asked that their names not be released while the recovery mission continues.

Stay with News 4 and KMOV.com for the latest on this developing story.
 

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