Body of missing helicopter pilot found in Tennessee River near Waterloo

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COLBERT COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) - Crews located the body of a missing helicopter pilot in the Tennessee River near Waterloo Tuesday.

It was about seven and a half miles from the crash site at Colbert Ferry Park.

Authorities on the scene told our reporter that employees of Haverfield Aviation found the body and identified it as the pilot. The coroners from Lauderdale and Colbert Counties also identified the body as the pilot.

"About ten minutes after three, they did a visual and though they had found something, called me on the radio, turned around and made another pass," explained Cherokee Fire Chief and incident commander Chuck Lansdell. "They identified him and put one of their crews off on shore."

The pilot, Abraham Bronn, 54, crashed in his helicopter on April 6. Since then, teams have been searching for him. They found his aircraft on April 7 and brought in a special barge and crane to lift it from the water.

"We're just glad we got him home to his family," added Lansdell. "They can start the next phase of this, the grieving and the recovery from it. I know it's traumatic for them. Every body was determined that they were going to stay out here until we got him home to his family."

Bronn was a line pilot for Haverfield Aviation, based out of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. His coworkers were the ones who spotted the body Tuesday.

"We were very thankful to have that air support," Lansdell said. "The pilot was telling me that he didn't belive we could have even seen him even from the surface or a boat, that his vantage point 100 feet in the air was what gave him the ability to see him at that time."

Read our past reports on WHNT.com about the crash.

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