The incident took place in Sullivan County on Saturday, May 13, at the Ascalona Campground in Barryville.
Deputies responded to the campground on a report of a missing person, said Sullivan County Undersheriff Eric Chaboty.
At the campground deputies interviewed witnesses who reported that they had observed a man camping at the edge of the Delaware River Friday, May 12, night.
The witness noticed that the doors on the man’s van were wide open and his campsite seemed to be still set up from the day before, but he was not around, Chaboty said.
When deputies searched the area, they found a set of clothing laid out on the shore, next to the water but there was no sign of the man.
On Sunday, May 14, at daybreak, a full-scale search was initiated utilizing law enforcement, fire service, and EMS personnel from across the area.
Chaboty said in the afternoon, a body was discovered washed up across the river on the Pennsylvania shoreline in Pike County in Lackawaxen.
The victim, who was identified as Orange County resident Anthony C. Lange, age 53, of Monroe, was the man missing from the campsite in Barryville, Chaboty added.
He was pronounced dead at the scene by Sullivan County Coroner Alan Kesten. An autopsy performed Monday, May 15, confirmed that Lange drowned.
"It is believed that Lange entered the water after setting up his campsite Friday night. He was not wearing a life jacket," Chaboty said.
The Sheriff’s Office was assisted by:
- New York and Pennsylvania state police
- Pike County Coroner
- National Park Service
- Yulan, Highland, Lumberland, White Lake, Kauneonga, and Port Jervis fire departments
- Lumberland EMS
- Sullivan County Dive Task Force.
“This drowning appears to be the first of the season”, said Sullivan County Sheriff Michael Schiff. “Hopefully it is the last. Do not underestimate the power of the Delaware River. Always wear a life jacket when you go near the water”.
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