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Posted on: September 28, 2020

Police recover missing boater from more than 1,500 feet under water

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South Lake Tahoe, CA- A boater went missing and his boat washed ashore in Nevada. Police say they have recovered his body in a rescue mission that took them to new depths. 

29-year-old Ryan Normoyle rented a boat from the ski run boat company on August 10th. That night, Ryan’s boat washed ashore in Glenbrook, Nevada, but Ryan wasn’t on it. 

South Lake Tahoe Police started a missing persons investigation with the help of the Douglas County Sheriff's Office. They found Ryan had recorded himself jumping off the boat, but the boat was left slightly in gear and moving forward at a slow speed. 

Investigators think Ryan couldn’t swim fast enough to catch it. The phone captured GPS data while recording and provided a possible location for a search and rescue operation. 

Douglas County Sheriff's Office Marine Unit (Marine 7) and Washoe County Marine Unit (Marine 9) quickly responded and deployed their Remote Operated Vehicles (ROV’s) to search the area. 

The marine units worked the area heavily for several days with no luck. A UC Davis Research Team was called to provide additional data on the water currents and conditions the day Ryan went missing. The UC Davis Research Team also used their unmanned submarine to search and scan the bottom of Lake Tahoe in search for Ryan. 

Ryan's Family reached out to Keith Cormican from Bruce's Legacy, a nonprofit organization that specializes in underwater body recovery and Keith jumped in to help. 

On September 24 the South Lake Tahoe Police Department started another search for Ryan with the assistance of Bruce’s Legacy, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and the South Lake Tahoe Fire Department. Two days later, Ryan was found near the GPS coordinates that were collected from his phone. He was 1,565 feet under the water. 

Due to technical issues it wasn’t until September 27th when Ryan’s body was recovered. Keith Cormican, founder of Bruce’s Legacy said this is the deepest recorded recovery in the United States and Canada. Previously, the deepest recovery in Lake Tahoe was in 2018 at a depth of 1,062 feet. 

Locating Ryan and bringing him to his family would not have been possible without the support of the Normoyle family and the outstanding partnerships from everyone involved. 

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