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Body of missing boater found by good Samaritan in Corsica River after 2-day search

The body of a woman who fell out of a racing sailboat during a practice on the Corsica River between Queen Anne’s and Kent counties on Friday night was found nearby Sunday morning by a good Samaritan while crews searched the area, according to Maryland Natural Resources Police.

Stephanie Meredith, 35, of Easton was one of 17 people aboard the log canoe when it capsized on a sharp turn before dark Friday night, said Candy Thomson, a Natural Resources Police spokeswoman.

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A chase boat trailing the canoe rescued the 16 other crew members, Thomson said, and several agencies launched a coordinated search for Meredith that included helicopters from the State Police and U.S. Coast Guard.

Meredith’s body was found about 8:30 a.m. Sunday, Thomson said. Calls to two phone numbers listed for her home went unanswered Sunday.

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“We searched all night Friday into Saturday,” Thomson said. “On Saturday, we brought in a Natural Resources Police dive team and searched until dark Saturday night. We resumed search at first light today, and a good Samaritan found the body.”

Memorial Day weekend kicks off the busiest season for boating, and officials are looking to prevent trouble on Maryland waters after 21 people died in boating accidents in 2015, the highest number in two decades. Last year, 125 people were injured in 146 accidents.

That section of the Corsica River is popular among recreational boaters, and many joined in the search, she said. She did not know the identity of the good Samaritan, or whether they were a member of the log canoe racing community.

Meredith’s body will be taken to the Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy, which will determine the cause of death, Thomson said.

The incident was the 12th fatality this year on Maryland waters, she said, up from a total of nine last year.

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