ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — Authorities are investigating two separate incidents that ended in tragedy along the Meramec River. One involved a 19-year-old who fell into the water, while the other concluded the search for a missing hiker from Ballwin.
St. Louis County police confirmed the body of 72-year-old Carol Schulte was found in the Meramec River on Memorial Day. She disappeared while hiking in Castlewood State Park last week.
More than 150 people helped search for her. Police said her remains were discovered by the boat ramp near Telegraph Road. There is no word yet on her cause of death, leaving many in the community heartbroken.
Also, authorities are looking into the death of 19-year-old Juan Sajbin, who was pulled from the Meramec River in Castlewood State Park on Memorial Day.
Authorities said the teen was having a day of fun with family and friends on the river’s shore when he slipped and fell into the water. Three men worked together to pull him out but said he was underwater for more than 15 minutes. He was later pronounced dead.
Meanwhile, the Metro West Fire Protection District is warning the public about water safety.
“I think it is important for people to know even when you are not swimming in the water, it’s important to have a floatation device jacket on to prevent drowning in that water,” said Lt. Matt Coppin, with the Metro West Fire Protection.
“It is frustrating knowing that deaths in the river could be prevented by wearing a life jacket,” he continued. “It’s a discussion to have with your kids. Families come to these waterways to have a good time and make good memories. Many times we see them end in a tragedy. That can be prevented.”
Police said both death investigations are still active.