Autopsy results still pending for Rockwood man

Posted July 29, 2011, at 9:47 p.m.

ROCKWOOD, Maine — The official cause of death for a Rockwood man whose body was found a week ago by kayakers on Moosehead Lake remains undetermined, a spokeswoman for the state medical examiner’s office said Friday.

James Russell, 51, last was seen on Sunday, Nov. 14, on Sand Bar Way in Rockwood just before a planned paddle across the lake to Mount Kineo. His green kayak, a paddle and his backpack were found last year floating in the water off Murray Road about two miles from Kineo.

Russell’s disappearance triggered an intense search by Russell’s family and friends, state game wardens, state forest rangers and volunteer rescue groups.

Though still subject to confirmation by DNA testing, Maine Warden Service officials are confident that Russell’s body was the one found July 23 face down and partially floating along the shore. The body was tentatively identified through clothing that matched the description of what Russell was wearing at the time of his disappearance.