Reporting Jenn Bernstein
By Jenn Bernstein
KINGWOOD TOWNSHIP, NJ (CBS) - After two days of searching for missing 16-year-old Jamire Gist from Willingboro, New Jersey, divers recovered a body at 1:34 p.m. on Thursday.
“The Garden State Underwater Recovery Team located a body in approximately 8 feet of water,” said Hunterdon County Prosecutor Anthony Kearns.
The body fits the description of Jamire Gist and is now at the Hunterdon County Medical Examiner’s Office for positive identification.
Gist was last seen tubing near the Kingwood Boat Launch with two 13 year old boys and three adult counselors from the Marlton Family Guidance Center yesterday before noon. The Hunterdon County Prosecutors Office said the teen–who was headed into his junior year at Willingboro High School–became separated from his tube and went underwater. He never resurfaced.
No one in the group was wearing life jackets, and it’s not clear if Gist knew how to swim.
“Jamire was not wearing a lifejacket. I want to remind all those that enjoy our waterways to be smart, be safe,” said Kearns.
The group used tubes from Delaware River Tubing. Greg Crance–the owner–says safety is a priority. Crance says that in the 26 years he’s been in business, he’s never had anyone get seriously injured or drown. Crance also said his company policy requires anyone under the age of 18 to wear a life jacket, but adds that it’s hard to tell anyone to do anything out on the water.
“On inner tubes, it’s strictly suggested. We heavily encourage everyone to wear one, particularly weak swimmers,” said Crance.
Crance also says everyone is required to sign a waiver.
“I am not sure if it was a counselor, but it would have to be an adult to sign off on it.”
The investigation into events surrounding the tragedy remains open. A call put in to the Marlton Family Guidance Center has not yet been returned.