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2 divers' bodies recovered in 'dangerous and complex' caves

October 17, 2016 - 9:06 AM

WEEKI WACHEE, Fla. - Authorities say the bodies of two divers have been recovered from underwater caves in the Tampa Bay area.

Rescue divers located the bodies in 260 feet of water in the Eagle's Nest diver area in Weeki Wachee, according to an email from Hernando County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Denise Moloney.

She says Justin Blakely told deputies Sunday night that his two friends, Patrick Peacock and Chris Rittenmeyer, had travelled from Fort Lauderdale to dive with him. Blakely said both were experienced divers and familiar with the caves.

Moloney says their bodies were found in "a very dangerous and complex area of the cave system."

Blakely had stayed near the surface, and he alerted authorities several hours after Peacock and Rittenmeyer had been expected to check in.

Autopsies have been scheduled.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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