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NM: Body of duck hunter found in Rio Grande

July 16, 2010

Body of duck hunter found in Rio Grande confirmed as Las Cruces-area man

The body of a Las Cruces-area man who apparently drowned in the Rio Grande while hunting ducks was found Thursday. Juárez rescue crews identified him as Ezequiel Roman Lesa, who was about 45 years old. His body was found in the river near the Bridge of the Americas, said Bernardo Escudero Ortega, Juárez Ecology and Civil Protection director.

Juárez officials said Lesa was originally from New Mexico. The body was recovered by Juárez authorities because it was closer to the Mexico side of the river. The cause of death is pending, but rescue crews believe Lesa drowned.

On Monday night, Lesa was hunting in Juárez when he reportedly went into the river to retrieve a duck and was carried away by a strong current, Juárez fire department officials said. He could not be found that night despite searches on both sides of the border. They included El Paso Fire Department divers and a helicopter.

Mexican and U.S. authorities are conducting a campaign warning people about the dangers of trying to swim in the river.

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