RCMP cross border to recover drowned Surrey man near Oroville

By on August 13, 2014

RCMP played a key role in recovering the body of a Surrey man who drowned in Osoyoos Lake near Oroville on the weekend.

RCMP divers using sophisticated sonar equipment located the body of John Mele, 43, of Surrey, B.C. around 6:40 p.m. Sunday.

Frank Rogers, Sheriff of Okanogan County, WA, said his office responded to a call the afternoon of Friday, Aug. 1 of a possible drowning near Veranda Beach on Osoyoos Lake.

Mele had been on a boat just off shore when he did a back flip into the water, Rogers said in a news release.

“Mele began to surface and then went back under the water and disappeared,” he said.

About 10 divers from Canada both civilian and with the RCMP response team searched the waters Sunday evening, locating the body, Rogers said.

Sgt. Kevin Schur, commanding officer with the Osoyoos RCMP Detachment, said that he, Cpl. Jason Bayda and other RCMP management were involved in obtaining numerous approvals and clearances allowing four members of the RCMP dive team to go south of the border with two RCMP boats and dive equipment.

“It was very much a team effort and good use of high tech RCMP equipment and trained RCMP divers,” said Schur.

Mele’s family were on the scene since the accident and were there on Sunday evening when the body was located, said Rogers.


Osoyoos Times



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