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Wardens will employ remote, underwater submersible at Rangeley Lake to find missing men

Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Troy R. Bennett | BDN
Open water steams at sunrise on Rangeley Lake just before members of the Maine Warden Service resume their search for three missing snowmobilers Thursday, Jan. 3, 2013.
By Andrew Neff, BDN Staff

AUGUSTA, Maine — While Maine Game Wardens are confident they know the location of the snowmobiles used by three men missing after snowmobiling at Rangeley Lake Dec. 20, they are still searching for the bodies of the men presumed dead.

The ongoing search for the snowmobilers should get a boost with the use of a new underwater remotely operated vehicle, the Maine Warden Service announced Monday.

The vehicle, which the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife received last November, will employ sonar and other technology to search for the bodies of Kenneth Henderson, 40, of China; Glenn Henderson, 43, of Sabattus; and John Spencer, 41 of Litchfield, who have been missing since their snowmobiles entered open water late on the evening of Dec. 20.

Wardens say they are confident they found all three snowmobiles in 70 feet of water on Jan. 3, and are hopeful the recent stretch of unseasonably warm weather creates more open water and aids in the search for the snowmobilers’ remains. Wardens did not say when the vehicle will be put in the water.

Divers will not be employed to search until credible, identifiable targets are located in the water, according to the Maine Warden Service.

The search for the snowmobilers has been suspended several times due to adverse water and weather conditions including high winds and drifting snow, and poor visibility.

Wardens have recovered several items including helmets and gloves belonging to the snowmobilers, who were snowmobiling from Carrabassett Valley and last seen in Eustis before disappearing on the lake.

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