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January 2, 2014

Search for woman goes on foot

Authorities spent a fifth day trying to recover the body of an Illinois woman who was swept away in flood waters along the East Fork of the White River near the Daviess-Pike County line on Sunday. Indiana Conservation Officers and volunteer fire fighters from Jefferson Township searched on foot for the body of Cathryn McGill, 31, of Des Plains, Ill.

"The water has dropped drastically over the last couple of days," said Indiana Conservation Officer Joe Haywood. "We are now doing all of the searches on foot in the area where we believe she may have been swept."

Cathryn McGill was traveling with her husband Adam, age 35, early Sunday morning. They had been visiting family in the Washington area and were on their way to Virginia where Adam is stationed in the Navy. Officials say Adam drove around the barricades on SR 257 and into the fast moving flood water of the East Fork of the White River. Their truck stalled and then began to float into a field. They both got out of the vehicle and tried to swim toward shore.

Officers say Adam was rescued by some duck hunters in the area, but they were unable to locate Cathryn. "We are concentrating our search efforts around the area where Adam was found," said Haywood. "The current from the river took him toward a small creek and we have concentrated our foot search in that area."

The search was being complicated by both the cold conditions and the mess left behind by the flood waters. "As that water goes down there are piles of debris and cornstalks left behind," said Haywood. "We have to check those closely before we can move on. We are really hoping that she didn't get drug into the main channel of the river."

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