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Sat. 4:21pm: Family confirms missing man recovered from Ohio River

April 13, 2013
Tribune Chronicle |

Two months after he was last seen checking into the Lafayette Hotel in Marietta, the body of a missing man was retrieved from the Ohio River Friday evening.

Carl Austin Travis, 22, of Parkersburg, W.Va., had disappeared while on leave from the U.S. Navy.

He was declared missing after failing to return to the USS Halyburton in Jacksonville, Fla., Feb. 22. His family reported losing contact Feb. 18.

Travis' mother, Susan Lott of Belpre said her son was identified by his jacket and wallet. Authorities declined to identify the body or a cause of death until an autopsy could be performed.

While heartbreaking, the discovery brings an end to two agonizing months of uncertainty, said Gary Backus, Travis' grandfather.

"This will mean some closure," said Backus, while leaving the area where the body was found.

The ongoing investigation had included a previous scan of the Ohio and Muskingum rivers. Three cadaver sniffing dogs had indicated to the possible presence of a body March 4 by the Ohio River levee in Marietta, but eight hours of searching turned up no physical evidence.

The body has been sent to Montgomery County for an autopsy, said Washington County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Mark Warden.



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