AD Main Menu

Body of second man in canoe accident recovered

Casey Grove

Divers found the body of a missing Wasilla man Saturday after discovering his dead brother and a canoe they'd rented in Matanuska Lake the day before, according to Alaska State Troopers.

It was just before 10:30 a.m. Friday when boaters on the lake near Palmer reported seeing the overturned canoe and finding a body. The dead man was identified as Michael Francis, a 70-year-old Pocatello, Idaho, resident. His brother, 55-year-old Wasilla resident Randy Francis, was missing, troopers said.

After an unsuccessful search for Randy Francis on Friday, a member of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough Dive Team resumed the search Saturday morning about 10:30 and found him more than five hours later, said troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen. The body was in about 35 feet of water, she said.

Both men appeared to have drowned, and neither was wearing a flotation device, troopers said.

Reach Casey Grove at or 257-4589.

Anchorage Daily News