Richmond man drowned in Fraser River trying to retrieve football

Ex Sun player drowns

UPDATE 12:11 p.m.

Deceased football player Kory Nagata was also a member of the Okanagan Sun Football team. Nagata played running back with the Sun during the 2014 and 2015 seasons.

ORIGINAL 10:14 a.m.

RCMP say a Richmond man drowned in the Fraser River after jumping in to retrieve a football. 

The body of Kory Nagata was found Monday – not far from where he had disappeared – after he had jumped into the river Sunday evening to retrieve a football near The Deck Kitchen and Bar.

“Witnesses said the man had retrieved the football, but was unable to return to the dock – disappearing from view as horrified onlookers rushed to his aid,” said RCMP Cpl. Ian Henderson.

“Upon seeing him struggling, two other males also jumped into the water. They were unable to rescue him before pulling themselves to safety.”

Richmond RCMP said they received a call around 9:30 p.m. about a man having being swept away by a current near Pacific Gateway Hotel on Cessna Drive.

An “extensive search was conducted” by the Coast Guard and the Royal Canadian Marine Search and Rescue, who searched the waters while Richmond Fire-Rescue and BC Emergency Health Services searched the shoreline.

The search for the 24-year-old was called off shortly before 1 a.m. due to the dark.

Emergency crew including the RCMP dive team, Air 1, Fraser Guardian patrol vessel, RCMP drone and ATVs resumed the search Monday morning during low-tide.

“The unpredictable nature of the Fraser River during the runoff season appears to have played a significant role in this tragic incident,” said Henderson, adding that hypothermia may also have been a factor.

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