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Mon Sep 18, 2017, 03:41 PM

Nearly Every Week, a Body is Found in a Portland River. This is Not Normal.

Nearly Every Week, a Body is Found in a Portland River. This is Not Normal.

The mystery points to this city’s love of the outdoors and its entrenched social ills.

By Natalie O'Neill | Published September 13 at 5:37 AM Updated September 13 at 3:37 PM

Content warning: This story contains discussions of suicide and violent death.

There was something in the water. ... Mike Johnson was with a friend in his 19-foot aluminum sled boat on the afternoon of June 12. They were on the Columbia River, just east of Government Island, fishing for pikeminnow. Johnson had just reeled in an empty line when he saw what looked like a bent buoy bobbing in the water. ...Johnson, 49, motored closer. As he neared the strange lump, his heart sank. ... It was a bloated corpse.
....

The creepy discovery wasn't unusual. It was the kickoff to one of Portland's most grotesque traditions: the summer of floaters.

During the next 10 weeks, at least seven more bodies would be found bobbing and drifting in Multnomah County waterways. On Aug. 21, two dead men surfaced within an hour of each other, one beneath the Broadway Bridge, the other in the Columbia River near Chinook Landing Marine Park.

That's just the beginning. A total of 45 human corpses—many of them "floaters" that rise up from the depths—were pulled from Portland's two major rivers between July 2016 and July 2017, according to the Multnomah County River Patrol.

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Reply Nearly Every Week, a Body is Found in a Portland River. This is Not Normal. (Original post)
mahatmakanejeeves Sep 2017 OP
Kittycow Sep 2017 #1
mahatmakanejeeves Sep 2017 #3
Shrike47 Sep 2017 #2

Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 04:03 PM

1. I live in PDX

and hadn't heard this. Yikes! But saddening too, as to what happened to these poor souls and if they were suffering.

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Response to Kittycow (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 05:14 PM

3. I was perplexed by the one who committed suicide by jumping off the Burnside Bridge.

I didn't think it was high enough.

The article said that he struck a concrete platform on the way down. Then it made sense.

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Original post)

Mon Sep 18, 2017, 04:15 PM

2. A lot of the summer drownings are because people over-challenge their swimming skills.

Or they don't wear life jackets going down rapids. Or they jump off high rocks into the hidden boulders. Or they say, "hold my beer and watch this."

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