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Body recovered after abandoned boat found on Catawba River

Gaston County Emergency Management believes the boater was fishing and it's being considered a boating accident.

BELMONT, N.C. — Emergency personnel have recovered a body after a boat was found floating adrift in the Catawba River near Belmont Wednesday. 

Gaston County Emergency Management believes the boater was fishing and it's being considered a boating accident. 

Crews from Gaston County, the Charlotte Fire Department, and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission were assisting in the search. Emergency personnel have setup resources on the Armstrong Road bridge not far from where the red boat was found. 

Steven Crocker said he met the owner of the boat several weeks ago.

"He seemed to be really enjoying the lake and talked about all the fish he caught back here in the cove," Crocker said. "It's just really sad when you see people come down here to enjoy the lake and have a good time, and something like this happens."

Earlier this year, two people died in area waters from drowning.

In May, four people were on a boat when it sank near the Kevin Lofton Boat Landing in Belmont along the Catawba River. Three people were pulled safely from the water while the fourth drowned. 

In June, Ethan Britt drowned after being swept away by waters in the South Fork River.

WCNC's Brandon Goldner is monitoring Wednesday's search. NBC Charlotte will have updates on this developing story as information becomes available.

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