A group of raccoon hunters has found the body of a fellow hunter that went missing early Saturday morning.
Just after 11 p.m. Saturday, the group was searching for Preston Luft, 26, of Carroll, who went missing after splitting from a group of hunters competing in a coon hound competition at the Central Iowa Coon Hunters Association, 2293 Zeller Ave., according to a release issued by Chief Deputy Burt Tecklenburg, of the Marshall County Sheriff's Office.
Witnesses last saw Luft around 2 a.m. Saturday when he went to retrieve his dog that had wandered off during a coon hunting competition along the Iowa River, according to Tecklenburg. Concerned members of the association contacted the sheriff's office Saturday afternoon.
At about 2 a.m. Sunday, authorities found Luft's body in a densely wooded area, which hampered the body's recovery, on the north side of the river, approximately 1.5 miles northwest of the unincorporated community of Quarry, according to Tecklenburg.
Deputies notified the family and called the Dr. David Bethel, the county medical examiner, to the scene. Neither Bethel nor police have determined a cause of death, but the incident remains under investigation, according to Tecklenburg.
Le Grand, Tama, and Marshalltown Fire Departments, Marshall County Emergency Management, K-9 Connection and numerous volunteers including local coon hunters assisted the sheriff's office with the search.