Search crews have recovered the bodies of a missing father and son from Lake Tawakoni, which is about 45 miles east of Dallas.
Texas Game Warden Gary Miller said Corey Saunders, 26, and his son Nathan, 5, went duck hunting on the lake around 5:45 a.m. Monday. When they didn’t return home in the evening, family members reported them missing.
Search crews found their equipment and a hunting dog in the Caddo Arm of the lake around 11 p.m. The 5-year-old boy’s body was found on the surface area of the water a short time later. The family lab named Hunt, who was out with the pair, turned up onshore and led the game warden to Nathan’s body.
The Medical Examiner said Tuesday that Nathan died due to accidental drowning.
Crews returned to the lake Tuesday morning to continue searching for his 25-year-old father. They pulled his body from the water around 10:30 a.m., just a few feet away from where his young son was found. His autopsy is still pending.
Authorities said the two were found in water that was about eight feet deep. Neither the father nor the son was wearing life jackets.
"Words don't express the heartbreak that these situation bring not only for family, but for my game wardens. This is the worst thing they do," Miller said.
Based on all of the hunting gear that was recovered in the water, game wardens believe the small boat may have been overloaded with gear. They also said strong storms at the time in the area may also have been a factor.
Friends who set up a GoFundMe page said Corey leaves behind a wife and newborn baby.