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Search for missing Potomac River fisherman resumes

May 17, 2010

HAGERSTOWN -- The search for a Gaithersburg, Md., man who is presumed to have drowned in the Potomac River on Saturday resumed at first light Monday morning, a Maryland Department of Natural Resources official said.

Daniel Figueroa, 37, was fishing with another man Saturday when they tried to swim to a better spot in the river, Sgt. Art Windemuth said Monday morning.

He disappeared near Lock 32, about 300 yards downstream from a footbridge crossing the Potomac River at Harpers Ferry, W.Va., DNR Sgt. Brian Albert said Sunday.

"They were swimming from rock-to-rock to get to a better fishing area," when Figueroa disappeared at about 5:30 p.m., Windemuth said. Rescue workers searched until about 8:15 p.m. Saturday and the search resumed Sunday without Figueroa's body being found.

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Monday's search involves only DNR police doing surface and shoreline searches of the river, Windemuth said. The area where Figueroa disappeared is considered Class 3 rapids with depths varying greatly, he said.

"In this area it is so treacherous we did not employ our dive team in fear of their safety," Windemuth said.

Figueroa's nephew, Cesar Figueroa, said Sunday that his uncle had fished in the area before, was in relatively good health and could swim.

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