The body of a Long Island native was found Tuesday night in the Ottawa River, three days after he went missing during a sailing trip with other boaters, according to police and news reports in Canada.
No foul play was suspected in the death of Stephen Cozzette, 57, whose 35-foot sailboat was found stuck on a shoal on the Ottawa River on Saturday, its engine running and no on aboard, Ottawa police said.
Cozzette, who grew up in Elwood before moving to Ottawa, had been alone on his 35-foot vessel as he went up the river with other boaters, according to Canadian news reports and a Facebook page for the search effort.
Family and friends described him as an avid and skilled sailor, so they have been mystified about what happened.
“He sailed almost all his life,” his cousin Nicholas Cozzette of East Northport said earlier this week.
The missing boater’s mother and brother flew to Ottawa Tuesday afternoon to be closer to the search effort.
Stephen Cozzette’s craft, named Elmo Earleywine, had been spotted Saturday afternoon by another boater, who had seen the sailboat earlier in the day lagging behind a group of boaters, then moving in a loop, according to the Ottawa Citizen newspaper. In the boat, a medical box was open on a couch, the paper said, and Cozzette’s car was found parked at his sailing club.
Ottawa police divers had looked for him, and friends and family of the former Long Islander had walked the shores along the route taken by the sailboats.