NEW ORLEANS — On Sunday morning, the Coast Guard suspended its search for a missing boater near the Highway 11 drawbridge. Officials say a body was recovered around 11:30 a.m. in Lake Pontchartrain.
The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office recovered the body of 33-year-old Arabi native Rod Willhoft, near where the incident took place.
Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector New Orleans received a notification from the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office stating they had recovered the missing person. Willhoft was reportedly unresponsive when his body was located.
A call was initially received at approximately 7 p.m. on Saturday stating a 24-foot pleasure craft with five people aboard collided with the Norfolk Southern Railroad Bridge and Willhoft, who was not wearing a personal flotation device, was ejected from the vessel.
The other four passengers were taken to a University Medical Center New Orleans.
All sustained serious injuries and are listed in stable condition.
The LDWF Enforcement Division will the lead investigative agency for this fatal boating incident.