Divers recover missing teen’s body in Clifford Lake


By Elisabeth Waldon • Last Updated 9:55 am on Saturday, May 26, 2012

Emergency crews search for a missing 16-year-old boy on Clifford Lake. Daily News/Kelli Ameling

STANTON - Montcalm County Sheriff’s divers recovered the body of a missing teenager in Clifford Lake shortly before midnight last night.

The 16-year-old boy is from St. Johns and was visiting his grandparents at their cottage, according to Montcalm County Undersheriff Mark Bellinger.

Deputies responded to 241 Royal Drive in Clifford Lake around 9:30 p.m. Friday.

The 16-year-old was preparing to go on a kayak ride while the rest of the family went on a pontoon boat ride around 8 p.m. When the family returned, they noticed the kayak was upside down.

“They weren’t immediately alarmed because the boy was a strong swimmer,” Bellinger said.

The family tried to call and text the boy. When they couldn’t locate him, they called the sheriff’s office.

After about a two-hour search, members of the sheriff’s dive team located the boy’s body in 8 feet of water about 30 yards off shore.

The boy was transported to a waiting ambulance, but was pronounced dead at the scene. The boy’s name is not being released at this time.

Bellinger said there is a possibility the boy got stuck when his kayak overturned.

“These are the wortst case scenarioes when you’re dealing with young people and the devestation to the families,” Bellinger said.

The Montcalm County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by Montcalm County Emergency Medical Emergency Services, the dive team and the sheriff’s posse.

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