Searchers seek missing boater in northeastern Ohio lake

(WKBN Photo)

CORTLAND, Ohio (WKBN) – The search for a missing boater at Mosquito Lake will resume at 8:30 a.m. Monday.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources, which is leading the search, is looking for 51-year-old John Schuster — about 6’1″ tall and weighing approximately 215 pounds. Police are classifying Schuster as alive, saying he is supposed to be a strong swimmer.

The search for Schuster was called off about 4 p.m. Sunday. He has been missing since Sunday morning.

Police say Schuster is wearing blue jeans and has brown hair. They are asking the public to contact Bazetta police (330-675-2730) or fire (330-637-8816) if they see him.

So far, more than a dozen fire and rescue crews have found only a life vest.

ODNR searched Sunday with medium sized boats with Sonar.

Police got the call at 10:42 a.m. Sunday that a canoe had capsized. Schuster and another passenger were out fishing on Mosquito Lake.

“That was the only information given to us until we got here,” said Captain Walter of Bazetta Fire. “We found a passing boater had picked up one of the souls and brought him ashore. He reported to us that there was another soul in the water.”

ODNR took over the search later in the afternoon. They say weather conditions made the search difficult.

“It’s very rough out there — it’s white capping and the winds are really picking up,” said ODNR Sgt. Josh Orwick. “We have a storm that seems to be moving in fast on the search crews out there.”

Rescuers are trying to stay positive.

“The person we’re looking for is said to be a strong swimmer,” Walter said. “So we’re still holding out hope that he’s either swimming or ashore somewhere where we haven’t found him yet.”

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