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Drowning victim found in Red Cedar River

By LeAnn R. Ralph

COLFAX —  Four days after he went into the Red Cedar River in the Russian Slough, the body of 21-year-old Juan Ramos-Malagon was recovered 500 feet downstream Saturday morning.

According to a news release from the Dunn County Sheriff’s office, the emergency communications center received a report of a man who had fallen out of a boat on the Red Cedar River near an area known as the Russian Slough in the Town of Tainter at about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 7.

When emergency personnel arrived, they learned that the man had been walking along the edge of the river and had slipped into the river.

The man who was with him tried to locate his companion in the river but was unsuccessful because of the fast-moving current.

Certain areas in West Central Wisconsin received more than five inches of rain the previous week, and the water level in the Red Cedar River was high at the time of the incident.

The Dunn County Sheriff’s Department, Menomonie fire department, the Colfax Rescue Squad and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources responded to the scene.

Rescue personnel searched the river with boats from the sheriff’s department, the Menomonie fire department and the DNR.

According to news reports, a helicopter from Colfax also helped with the search.

The Dunn County Sheriff’s Department sent out a news release at shortly before 11 a.m. Wednesday asking the general public to stay out of the Red Cedar River and the Russian Slough to allow emergency personnel to conduct search operations.

The river search was suspended at dark on Tuesday and resumed first thing Wednesday morning.

Rescue workers searched the river all day Wednesday and suspended the search Wednesday evening.

At around 8:30 a.m. Saturday, June 11, deputies from the Dunn County Sheriff’s Department found the man who had gone missing after being swept downstream while in the Russian Slough the previous Tuesday, according to a new release issued by the sheriff’s department at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

The man was identified as Juan Ramos-Malagon, 21, from Mexico, and was located about one-tenth of a mile downstream from where he entered the river.

Ramos-Malagon was residing in rural Menomonie.

The Dunn County Sheriff’s Department would like to remind all residents of Dunn County to be especially cautious when wading or fishing along the shoreline of any river where the water level is high and the current is fast.