21-year-old NC kayaker who vanished Sunday is identified, body found


The body of a 21-year-old kayaker who vanished Sunday in North Carolina's Saxapahaw Lake has been found, according to WFMY.

A search crew of about 30 found Joseph Taylor Smith on Monday afternoon, not far from where he disappeared at 6 p.m. Sunday, reported WGHP. Smith is from Graham, according to WFMY.

The lake is part of the Haw River path through Alamance County and has a popular paddle access area.

Witnesses told deputies that a group of friends, including Smith, was in the lake when a kayak overturned, reported WFMY. Smith, who was not wearing a life preserver, decided to swim to shore rather than wait for the kayak to be stabilized, reported WGHP.

A witness saw Smith go under as he swam and he did not resurface, reported WFMY.

Crews have rescued a man from the Catawba River in Gaston County after he got stuck on a pile of debris Wednesday afternoon.

Mark Price: 704-358-5245, @markprice_obs