A 29-year-old man's remains were recently recovered from more than a 1,000 feet below the surface of a California lake after he was reported missing two months ago.
Ryan Normoyle — a carpenter from New Jersey — was boating through Lake Tahoe's waters in August when he experienced trouble while attempting to film himself swimming. According to the New York Times, Normoyle set up his phone on his boat to record himself jumping into the lake, but on his second attempt, he resurfaced to find his boat was drifting away.
The camera filmed Normoyle trying to catch up with the vessel for another two minutes until he disappeared from the frame. Authorities later said Normoyle left the boat in gear.
On Aug. 10, Normoyle's boat was found abandoned in Glenbrook, Nevada, KCRA reported. Officers from the Douglas County Sheriff's Office used GPS data from his smartphone to track where he went missing and found his body 1,565 feet underwater on Sept. 26.
The next day, authorities launched a retrieval effort with help from Bruce's Legacy, a volunteer organization that provides search and recovery operations for drowning victims.
Normoyle's remains were eventually recovered from the lake, and the organization said it was the deepest recorded recovery ever performed in the United States and Canada.
Normoyle's mother, Mary, told the Times her son was becoming an outdoorsman and wanted to experience more exciting lakes than the ones near his home.
"I’m not sure if he knew just how treacherous Lake Tahoe is," she told the outlet. "I certainly didn’t."
"I couldn’t believe the size," Mary said of seeing the lake for the first time. "Huge."
According to his Instagram page, Normoyle had a passion for working on homes and frequently showed off staircases and cabinets he had built. But he also had a knack for art and using his spare wood for other projects.
"We now had Ryan on his way to his family," a post on the Bruce's Legacy website reads. "It took about two hours of hand over hand. Everyone pitched in to get him to the surface."
"I can assure you that it takes many volunteers to do what we do. There is no way this recovery could have been pulled off without all the help and cooperation that we had here on Lake Tahoe this week," it continued. "It takes special people to be able to do this work and we had many stepping up to get Ryan back home."
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