Troopers recover body of
second missing paddler on Bull Creek
Wes Johnson, Springfield
Published 3:45 p.m. CT
May 3, 2019 | Updated 4:17 p.m. CT May 3, 2019
recovered the body of the second kayak paddler who had been missing since
Wednesday afternoon on Bull Creek in Taney County. Taney County Coroner Tony
Mullen identified the man as Scott Puckett, 33, of Forsyth.
Sgt. Jason Pace, with
the Missouri State Highway Patrol, said the man's body was located at 1:34 p.m.
Friday, about a quarter mile south of the low-water bridge where three kayakers
capsized during extremely high flood waters.
One man made it out of
the creek and walked for more than two miles before finding a house, where
authorities were alerted to the tragedy.
Early Thursday, troopers
found and recovered the body of Alex Ekern, 23, of Branson, near where the
The coroner said both
victims were caught in a whirlpool or siphon that took them under water. He
said both victims were located under debris in the creek, in the vicinity of
thunderstorms, Bull Creek rose about 14 feet on Tuesday and was in high flood
stage when the three paddlers launched their boats Wednesday afternoon. According to troopers, none of the paddlers
were wearing life jackets.
Emergency crews search for 2 missing
kayakers near Forsyth, Mo.
Wed 5:01 PM, May 01,
NEAR FORSYTH, Mo. -- The Taney County Sheriff's Office is
searching for two missing kayakers on Bull Creek. The two disappeared a
few hours ago near Forsyth. A third kayaker reported them missing. Heavy rain
Tuesday raised the creek levels, creating rushing water. Western Taney
County Fire Chief Chris Berndt says none of the three kayakers wore
lifejackets. He says his rescuers will search until dark.
TANEY COUNTY, Mo. - Law enforcement and first responders are
searching for two missing kayakers in Taney County, Missouri Wednesday night.
The kayakers were last seen on Bull Creek. A third kayaker
reported them missing.
The Western Taney County Fire Protection Chief said the kayakers
were inexperienced and did not have life jackets.
The creek does have raised water levels after a rainy Tuesday
Crews with the fire protection district and Missouri State
Highway Patrol are searching until dark on Wednesday. It is not clear if crews
will return tomorrow.
The crews are searching near Highway 176 between Shady Rapids
Road and Round Mountain Road.
NEAR WALNUT SHADE, Mo.
-- The Western
Taney County Fire and Rescue spent many hours searching for two missing
kayakers on Bull Creek near Walnut Shade, Mo. Wednesday.
"All capsized, all got knocked out of
their kayaks," Western Taney County Fire Chief Chris Berndt said.
"One of them came up."
One kayaker was found safe. He was able to
escape the waters, find a nearby house and ask for help."He thought it took him two hours to get
to a house," Berndt said. "They called 911."
Berndt says none of the three kayakers wore
The rescuers searched until dark. Chester
Kidwell lives on Bull Creek he joined the search."Looked from the low water bridge, all
the way down past our property," Kidwell said. "We walked close to
two and a half, three miles."Kidwell says this is a sad day for his
"I hate to see it but I wish people
wouldn't be kayaking," Kidwell said. "I know it is fun but it is not
fun when you drown."
If you plan to go out on the water, Berndt
says you need to be a skilled swimmer and bring proper equipment, like life
The search will resume Thursday morning.
Emergency crews locate
body of 1 of 2 kayakers missing near Walnut Shade, Mo.
Rescue teams search for
Coroner Tony Mullen tells KY3/KSPR
News that search teams found the body of Alex
Ekern, 23, about a mile upstream from where a surviving kayaker called for
help. Two of three kayakers disappeared in the water after the kayaks capsized
Wednesday afternoon. One of three who survived and called for help.
Alex's friends say he was known by his
nickname "Phoenix." They say he was a loyal friend who passed away
doing something he loved to do. "He was a really good guy. [He was]
one call away. If you call him, he'd always answer. That's one thing I could
say about him, he was always there for us when we needed him," Monica
The Missouri Highway Patrol is assisting in
the search for the last kayaker missing.
Western Taney County Fire Chief Chris Berndt
says none of the three kayakers wore life-jackets. If you plan to go out on the
water, Berndt says you need to be a skilled swimmer and bring proper equipment,
Read the original version of this article
body found; 4th death from flooding
Posted 4:20 pm, May 3, 2019, by Associated Press, Updated
at 04:19PM, May 3, 2019
AVA, Mo. – The body of a
kayaker missing since Wednesday has been found in a swollen southwest Missouri
creek, the fourth person to die in the latest round of spring flooding.
Missouri State Highway
Patrol Sgt. John Lueckenhoff says troopers found the body of 35-year-old Scott
M. Puckett of Forsyth, Missouri, Friday afternoon in Bull Creek. The body of his
friend, 23-year-old Alex Ekern, was found Thursday.
Puckett and Ekern were
among three men who began paddling Wednesday afternoon in the creek near the
small town of Walnut Shade. The patrol says they were swept over a low-water
bridge and caught in what is called a hydraulic, which creates a
washing-machine effect that is hard to escape.
One of the men was able to escape and climbed a
steep bank seeking help.