18-year-old Mad River drowning victim identified by coroner

DAYTON — The 18-year-old male who went missing in Mad River Friday evening has been identified by the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office.

Jaen De Dieu Uwiragiye, of Dayton, is presumed to have drowned in the kayak area at Eastwood MetroPark.

Crews were first dispatched to 1401 Harshman Road at 5:40 p.m. Friday night for a possible drowning near the area of the kayak feature at Eastwood MetroPark, Dayton Fire District Cheif David Wright said.

Uwiragieya was found around 1 p.m. Saturday afternoon after the search and recovery efforts resumed after being called off Friday evening as darkness fell.

Witnesses offered conflicting accounts as to whether Uwiragiye slipped or intentionally went into the water. Witnesses said the last thing they saw was his hand, Chief Wright said.

According to a 911 caller, they described seeing Uwiragiye on a rock near the river’s edge. He then slipped and fell into the water and did not reappear.

“He is just gone, he can’t swim,” said the caller.

Riverside Fire put boats on the water, divers with Wright-Patterson AFB Fire went in and Ohio Department of Natural Resources personnel used a sonar in their efforts to locate Uwiragieya.

Wright said the water is 20 to 25 feet deep at the kayak feature, where the swirling water forms a “V” and presents deceptive currents that are strong.

“There is no indication this was anything other than an accident,” Wright said, noting “Swimming absolutely is not allowed (in the kayak area, where users are required to wear safety vests); it’s unsafe.”