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Body of 1 missing man recovered, ID'd after Lake Lanier boat crash
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The Georgia Department of Natural Resources released images of the boats that collided Wednesday, May 8, 2019, on Lake Lanier and left two fishermen from Cumming missing.

Divers recovered the body of a missing fisherman from Cumming in Lake Lanier on Thursday while the search for a second continued.

The body of Brianislav Prazich, 59, was recovered around 3:30 p.m. near the site of where a bass boat and 23- to 24-foot cruiser collided on Wednesday, May 8, according to Mark McKinnon, a public affairs officer for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

The body was found in 33 feet of water, McKinnon said, near standing timber on the bottom. It was first detected with sonar and then confirmed by an ROV, a small remote-controlled submarine equipped with cameras.

Meanwhile, the search continued for Nick Schimweg, 38, also of Cumming, who has been missing since Wednesday’s boat accident in the Bald Ridge Creek area of Little Ridge Park.

Prazich was the operator of a bass boat, with Schimweg his passenger, when it collided with a cruiser with three adults on board: Scott Butler, 55, of Atlanta who was operating the cruiser; Amy R. Butler, 19, of Atlanta; and Abigail Suzman, 18, of Scarsdale, N.Y., the DNR said.

Scott Butler was taken to North Fulton Hospital for treatment of chest pain and upper extremity injuries, according to Division Chief Jason Shivers of the Forsyth County Fire Department, while Amy Butler and Suzman received only minor injuries.

The cruiser received only minor damage, the DNR said.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Georgia DNR Law Enforcement Division, Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office, Forsyth County Fire Department and Forsyth County Emergency Management Agency are involved in the recovery effort.

Rescuers searched for Prazich and Schimweg until dark Wednesday and resumed their efforts around 8:30 a.m. on Thursday using sonar equipment on patrol boats and a pontoon, the DNR said.

The water in the search area ranged from 35 to 80 feet deep, the DNR said, with the bottom covered with “heavy vegetation and standing timber.”

The cause of the accident is under investigation by the DNR’s Critical Incident Response Team, which is expected to take 6-8 weeks, the DNR said.

The only witnesses of the accident are believed to be the survivors, the DNR said.

Forsyth County News Online Editor Jim Dean contributed to this report.

Officials search an area on Lake Lanier near Bald Ridge Creek for two missing boaters on Wednesday, May 8, 2019. - photo by Ben Hendren, Forsyth County News.
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