Divers recovered the body of a 36-year-old Missoula man on July 3. He had been missing since Friday when he became separated from his boat near the Narrows of Flathead Lake, a choke point that separates Polson Bay to the south from the northern portions of the lake.

The victim, Chad Hansen, was last seen around 9:41 p.m. on June 28 when witnesses said he became separated from his boat. In the days that followed, Hansen was presumed dead as search and rescue crews from Lake and Missoula County probed the depths of the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi. On the evening of July 3, Lake County Don Bell announced in a press release that divers had recovered Hansen’s body from 75 feet of water just north of the Narrows, the same area where Hansen was reportedly last seen. The recovery occurred around 5:30 p.m.

Searches included multiple teams and a variety of technologies from around the region, Bell said. Police personnel from sheriff’s departments across Flathead and Missoula counties, as well as Kootenai County, Idaho, all lent personnel and equipment during the days-long effort.

“The Lake County Sheriff’s Office would like to extend our sincere thanks to Flathead County Sheriff Brian Heino, Missoula County Sheriff Jeremiah Peterson and Kootenai County (Idaho) Sheriff Bob Norris, their respective search and rescue teams, and Lake County Search and Rescue for the efforts and expertise of their teams,” Bell said in the release.

Hansen’s body was taken to the Montana State Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy.

“The sheriff’s office extends its condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Hansen,” Bell said.

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