May 28, 2014 —
TOWN OF LUMBERLAND, NY — A 22-year-old man is presumed dead after removing his life jacket and diving into the waters of the Upper Delaware River on May 25. Friends say they did not know why Ukonne Uyobong removed his life jacket, and added that he did not know how to swim.
He dove from a rented raft at a location near an office of the National Park Service (NPS) and was with two friends at the time of the incident. He reportedly surfaced once about 50 feet from shore in water 10 to 15 feet deep, and was not seen by friends after that.
The water was still high and muddy after the recent heavy rains.
NPS rangers started to search for Uyobong almost immediately, but he could not be found. Divers resumed the search for more than eight hours on May 26, but again did not locate the victim.
Divers entered the waters again on May 27 in an effort to locate the body.
NPS urges all people who use the river to wear a life jacket; there has never been a drowning victim who was wearing a properly fitted and fastened life jacket.