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Tubers rescued from Merrimack River in Concord; woman’s body recovered from Souhegan

  • Mary Ellen Casey of Greenville. Courtesy

  • The Souhegan River at Mill Street in Greenville. Staff photo by Ben Conant

  • The Souhegan River at Mill Street in Greenville. Staff photo by Ben Conant

  • Around 6:50 p.m. Tuesday, the Concord Fire Department was called to rescue three people on inner tubes in the Merrimack River. —Courtesy

  • Around 6:50 p.m. Tuesday, the Concord Fire Department was called to rescue three people on inner tubes in the Merrimack River. Courtesy of the City of Concord

  • Around 6:50 p.m. Tuesday, the Concord Fire Department was called to rescue three people on inner tubes in the Merrimack River. —Courtesy

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 7/21/2021 9:41:52 PM
Modified: 7/21/2021 9:41:54 PM

State and local officials warned the public to be careful in and around fast-moving rivers and streams after a drowning on the Souhegan in Greenville, N.H., and a close-call rescue in Concord.

Emergency personnel recovered the body of a missing Greenville woman in the Souhegan River Tuesday morning.

Mary Ellen Casey, 42, had been reported missing about 3 p.m. Monday. Greenville-Temple Police Chief Jim McTague said that they found personal items of Casey’s on the shore of the Souhegan River, near Mill Street.

After a search that went until sunset Monday, officers from NH Fish and Game were called in Tuesday to help. About 10 a.m., a conservation officer located a body in the river. Due to high water levels, the Bedford Fire Department Swift Water Rescue team was called in. Casey’s body was recovered about 2 p.m.

McTague said that Casey was found about a quarter of a mile from where authorities believe she entered the water.

“Obviously we don’t know why she went into the water,” McTague said. “We don’t know if she fell, don’t know if she was swimming; we don’t know. Probably never will know.”

The case, McTague said, is now with the medical examiner. According to Fish and Game, foul play is not considered to be a factor.

Casey’s longtime friend, Kim Duthie, of Greenville, described Casey as “amazing,” dedicated to her work, her loved ones and her dog, Roodey.

“She was just bubbly, the life of the party,” Duthie said.

To those closest to her, Duthie said, Casey went by her last name.

“If you needed anything, she would give it to you,” Duthie said. “She would help anybody without even questioning it.”

Stephanie Canelas, who said she is the best friend of Casey’s sister, said she has known Casey since they were children.

“She was a really nice person who loved making people laugh,” Canelas said. “It’s so sad and unfortunate.”

Later Tuesday, around 6:50 p.m., the Concord Fire Department was called to rescue three people in the Merrimack River. Each of the three was on inner tubes, and the group found themselves unable to reach an area of the shoreline where they could safely exit the river, Concord fire officials said.

They were located without life vests, clinging to a tree trying not to be swept further down the river. Firefighters pulled them into a boat and unloaded them on shore.

“All of the people involved were fortunate to have such a positive outcome. This could have been a significantly worse situation,” Lieutenant Kris Otterson said.

Officials urged people to take additional safety measures or avoid rivers altogether.

“The rivers that run through Concord can be very deceiving. Recent heavy rains have changed the depth and speed of the rivers,” Fire Chief Sean Brown said. “Areas that were, until just recently, slow and shallow, are now much deeper and swift-moving.”

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department advised against going near or into rivers due to high levels of rain over the past few days.

“Rivers are high and dangerous. Do not enter rivers during high water events, as rivers become unpredictable,” Fish and Game officials said.

The Concord Monitor contributed to this report.




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