24 Days After an Arkansas Kayaking Expedition, Drummer Chuck Morris and His Son’s Bodies Were Found

Authorities reported on Sunday that the body of musician Chuck Morris, best known as the percussionist for the band Lotus, and his son Charley were located 24 days after the two went missing during a kayaking trip in Arkansas.

Morris and his kid were reported missing on March 16, and the Benton County Sheriff’s Office immediately began searching for them. Using remote-operated underwater vehicles in a “difficult environment” deeper than 180 feet, the Tennessee teams from Carroll County Mennonite Disaster Service and Christian Aid Ministries were able to collect the dead, according to the authorities.

“Sheriff Holloway, along with the family of Chuck and Charley, would like to thank all the men and women who donated their time and efforts to help bring closure to the family and recover the two missing men,” the sheriff’s office said.

Lotus Drummer Chuck Morris and Son Feared Dead
Lotus Drummer Chuck Morris and Son Feared Dead

“Our heart goes out the family of Chuck and Charley Morris and we are thankful today that we can help bring closure,” the sheriff’s office said. An extensive search was initiated when the two went missing in the middle of March during a kayaking trip on Beaver Lake, a reservoir in the state’s northwest corner.

Lt. Shannon Jenkins of the Benton County Sheriff’s Office said that other agencies contributed to the endeavor by sending in dive teams, boats, and dogs. But, after several days of looking, the operation shifted to one of recovery.

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“This lake is a tremendous challenge to search but we’re doing everything we can,” Tony Wade, director of operations for Cajun Coast Search and Rescue, told CBS Colorado.

According to CBS Colorado, the lake’s water temperature plummeted to the 30s and 40s in the days after the kayakers disappeared. The United States Coast Guard Auxiliary reports that humans have a 90-minute survival window in water temperatures between 35 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

“You’d instantly go into shock,” Wade said. “This is 100% a recovery.” Members of Lotus quickly expressed their fears that Morris and his son were dead, just days after they went missing.

“We were all hoping for a miracle, but at this point, the search for Chuck & Charley has moved to a recovery. With help from K9 teams, there is a probable location on the lake, but logistical challenges including temp, weather, and depth have prevented a recovery thus far,” the band wrote on Twitter on March 21.

“While we are deeply grieving, we plan to celebrate Chuck and Charley’s lives, our memories with them, and what they meant to so many people,” the band added.

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