HARRISON, Ohio - As severe storms broke out across the Tri-State Wednesday afternoon, kayakers were making their way down the Whitewater River near Harrison.
There were trees and power lines down, as strong winds ripped through the area. Heavy rains caused the river to swell and a witness allegedly saw three women in a red kayak get caught in the water and flip over. The witness said that two of the women fell in, and the other went floating down the river with the kayak. He said he then lost sight of them.
This report brought out the Whitewater Township Fire Department to investigate the missing kayakers. Early reports from the fire department’s chief, Scott Schorsch, were that they couldn’t confirm if the women were still in the water or if they had made it to shore safely.
Throughout the next few hours, worried family members showed up to the Green Acres Canoe and Kayak Rental on Suspension Bridge Road, near the Kilby Road exit off of I-275. They’d heard the news of the missing kayakers and were concerned about their family members that were still on the water.
As group by group trickled in, everyone was accounted for, and their families were relieved. Even though none of the kayakers that returned fit the description of the missing women, the search was eventually called off.
Officials spent hours combing the shores by foot, and used airboats to search the shallow waters of the Whitewater River, but found nothing. After a more than two hour search, shortly after 7 p.m., Chief Schorsch informed 9 News that the search was over and they hadn’t found any evidence that anyone was still in the water.
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