MONTE RIO (CBS SF) – A boy drowned in the Russian River in Sonoma County on Sunday evening, the second drowning reported in the river over the weekend.

The Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office was notified around 6 p.m. Sunday about a missing boy, Monte Rio Fire Protection District Chief Steve Baxman said. The boy had not been seen for a few hours and was presumed to have wandered off.

The Russian River Fire Protection District began a boat search of the river around 6:30 p.m. and the Monte Rio Fire Protection District launched a boat with an underwater camera around 7:30 p.m., Baxman said. The boy’s body was found about a half-mile from Johnson’s Beach in about 10 feet of water around 8:20 p.m. The teen was seen earlier swimming from the north side of the river to the south side.

“He was supposed to have been a good swimmer,” Baxman said.

The Sonoma County coroner’s office was not immediately identifying the teen, but Baxman said he was not from the Sonoma County area.

The death came a day after a kayaker drowned in the Russian River. The coroner’s office identified the kayaker as 23-year-old Edgar Mejia of Santa Rosa.

Witnesses called 911 around 4 p.m. Saturday after the kayak capsized west of the Casini Ranch Family Campground at 22855 Moscow Road in Duncans Mills. The caller said one of the two kayakers was in distress and having difficulty staying afloat, Sonoma County sheriff’s Lt. Al Vernon said.

The kayaker disappeared underwater for approximately 7 to 10 minutes before he was located and rescued, Vernon said.

Resuscitation efforts failed and Mejia was pronounced dead at the scene at 4:34 p.m. An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

Baxman said Mejia was camping with his family, but couldn’t swim and was not wearing a life jacket.


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