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Missing Kayaker Found Dead in Piscataway Creek

Police still investigating the incident.

When Sylvia Thompson didn’t return from her day of kayaking on Sunday, her husband, Dodge Thompson, reported her missing.

After spending much of the day searching on Monday, rescue crews found the body of the missing kayaker Tuesday morning in Piscataway Creek.

Sgt. Ken Turner said a helicopter spotted the body, along with a red kayak, shortly after 10 a.m. in Piscataway Creek, a tributary of the Potomac River, across the river from Mount Vernon.

Park Police spokesman Sgt. Scott Fear says the initial report of missing person went to District of Columbia police.

Maryland Natural Resources police were heading the search until the kayaker's car was found on a parking lot next to Piscataway Creek, a Potomac tributary. This is U.S. Park Police property and Fear says the parking lot is near a popular setting-off point for boaters and kayakers.

Park Police took over the river search late Monday and were joined by the Coast Guard, Maryland Natural Resources Police, and rescue crews from Prince George's, Charles and Fairfax counties and Maryland State Police. The search stretched from Piscataway Creek, a Potomac River tributary in Prince George's County, to the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, about five miles north.

Sylvia Thompson was a retired science teacher from the Beauvoir School in Northwest D.C., who lived in the District with her husband, Dodge Thompson. She is survived by two adult children.

The cause of death had not been determined last night. Authorities said they were investigating the possibility that it was medically related.

"We do not suspect foul play," said Sgt. Ken Turner, a spokesman for the Maryland Natural Resources Police.