Body of man who drowned in Merced County forebay recovered, deputies say

The Merced County Sheriff’s Office has recovered a body from the O’Neill Forebay, west of Los Banos, officials said.

Authorities, including California State Parks and Merced County Sheriff’s Office rescue teams, were working throughout Monday to find the male victim, Deputy Daryl Allen said. They recovered his body Monday afternoon in the forebay, which is next to the San Luis Reservoir.

The man was the second person who drowned over the weekend in Merced County. A man who reportedly jumped off the pier and was attempting to swim back to shore in Lake Yosemite Sunday reportedly drowned. His body was found a few hours later.

Allen couldn’t immediately comment on the circumstances surrounding the forebay drowning.

The victims’ identities in both drownings weren’t immediately available.

This story will be updated.

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Vikaas Shanker is an award-winning reporter covering education, crime and courts for the Merced Sun-Star and Los Banos Enterprise. After growing up in Naperville, Illinois and graduating from the University of Kansas, he reported in several Chicago suburbs before moving to Merced County in 2016.