Colorado Parks and Wildlife park rangers recovered the body of a man flying a motorized paraglider who crashed Saturday while skimming the surface of the water along the south shore of Lake Pueblo State Park.
A call for help came in around 8:30 a.m. Saturday after witnesses reported seeing two paragliders crash near Pedro's Point. Both reportedly were skimming the lake surface and dangling their feet when they went down.
CPW Rangers Daryl Seder and Matt Taylor responded by boat and began immediate search and rescue efforts.
One of the paraglider pilots was able to escape the wreckage and survived. The other, however, became tangled in the parachute, fan and ropes of the paraglider and appeared to have drowned, said Joe Stadterman, park manager at Lake Pueblo.
The CPW rangers located the pilot and recovered the remains. The body was turned over to Pueblo County Coroner's office for identification and an official determination of the cause of death.
Stadterman offered condolences to the victim's family and friends.
"This is a tragic loss of life," Stadterman said. "And it underscores the importance of being extremely careful around the water. If you are fishing on the shore, boating or even gliding over the water, we strongly urge you to wear a life jacket."
If a drowning is confirmed by the coroner, it would be the ninth drowning in Colorado in 2021. Seven of the drownings have been on reservoirs, lakes or ponds. Two have occured in swiftwater.
Colorado experienced its worst year on the water ever in 2020 when 34 people drowned.