Fort McCoy dive and rescue team finds body of fisherman missing since Wednesday near Buffalo City

Several other agencies participated in search for the 74-year-old, whose boat capsized
Buffalo Boat 1
A dive and rescue team from the Fort McCoy (Wis.) Fire Department searches for missing fisherman before finding his body Friday morning. (Buffalo County Sheriff's Office photo)

BUFFALO CITY, Wis. (WKBT) – A dive and rescue team from the Fort McCoy (Wis.) Fire Department Friday located the body of a 74-year-old fisherman who had been missing since Wednesday evening and presumed drowned.

The team found the body of Dennis Freidel of Prescott, Wis., with underwater equipment at about 11:30 a.m. Friday, according to a Buffalo County Sheriff’s Office news release.

Search and rescue teams from several area communities and agencies responded to a report of a capsized boat on the backwaters of the Mississippi River about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday. They determined that the boat owner was missing and began searching the water and shoreline in the area, a quest that continued throughout the day Thursday and Friday morning.

In addition to the Buffalo County Sheriff’s Department and the Fort McCoy, other participants in the search included the Tri-Community Fire Department, other surrounding fire departments, search and rescue units of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the Winona (Minn.) Dive and Rescue. Scenic Valley Ambulance and Western Buffalo County Ambulance were on the scene.

The emergency responders included volunteers as well as full-time workers, the sheriff’s office said.

“ The community has so many Firemen and EMS individuals willing to leave their fulltime jobs to assist in emergencies! Your dedication to the community and your neighbors is AMAZING!” according to a posting on the Buffalo sheriff’s Facebook page.

The sheriff’s office also credited businesses such as B&S Express, The Great River Harbor, Kwik Trip and the North End Pub & Grill with supplying food, water and soda to the searchers, as well as Affordable Septic for the use of its facility at the site.

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