Man found in river identified as missing barge captain - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Man found in river identified as missing barge captain

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Vernon Bumgarner, 60 Vernon Bumgarner, 60

(WMC-TV) - The Phillips County Sheriff's Office identified the body found by a fisherman in the Mississippi River last week.

The man found dead is identified as Vernon Bumgarner. The 60-year-old barge captain went missing in January after falling overboard.

Bumgarner's family told Action News 5 that he was a veteran with decades of experience.

"He's been out on the water since he got out of the Navy," said his sister, Susan Santiago in January.

The U.S. Coast Guard joined in the search for the missing captain, complete with helicopters and boats.

A commercial fisherman and his son found Bumgarner as they were setting out nets in the river.

"My son said, 'That's a deer daddy, that's deer floating.' I said, 'That's not a deer.' We eased up on it and found it was a body," said Robert Randleas. "He had tennis shoes and socks and no clothes."

According to the sheriff's office, Bumgarner was identified by dental records.

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