Empty Fishing Boat Prompts Mississippi River Search

Brett Blume

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – Search crews continue to look for a fisherman who may be missing after his boat was found on the Mississippi River early Friday morning.

Coast Guard Lieutenant Colin Fogarty said they are looking for Dennis McMenamy, 47, of Richmond Heights.

An empty 18′ fishing boat was discovered by a barge worker just after 3 a.m. near the Chain of Rocks bridge. Lt. Fogarty said the boat belongs to a man who friends describe as “an avid fisherman who often fished in late hours”.

After examining the boat, friends told Lt. Fogarty that McMenamy’s favorite life jacket is not aboard the boat.

Illinois Department of Natural Resources spokesman Chris McCloud said it appears the boat got caught in the middle of a downstream tow that was pushing three columns of barges:

“The two outside columns were longer than the middle column which then created kind of a pocket in between the two outside columns.”

McCloud said they are still not positive McMenamy was even on the boat.

Spanish Lake firefighters are assisting in the search efforts.

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