2 dead in Lake Lanier boat accident

Officials have identified two bodies that were recovered after a boat overturned Friday on Lake Lanier, officials said.

The bodies of Melissa Renee McMahan, 45, of Mount Washington, Ky., and Tammy Reece, 44, of Columbia, Ky., were located after an overnight search, officials with the Department of Natural Resources said Saturday.

Two men are still missing, DNR officials said. They have been identified as Arthur Gene McMahan Jr., 46, of Mount Washington, Ky. and Anthony Reece Jr., 44, of Columbia, Ky.

Search teams found the women’s bodies using special tracking equipment that works with limited traffic on the water.

Because of high boat traffic during the day Saturday, officials will not resume using sonar to search for the missing men until the early evening. However, searching the lake surface will continue all day Saturday, DNR spokesman Maj. Stephen Adams said.

The 38-to-40-foot cigarette-type boat was traveling southbound near Cocktail Cove when it overturned just before 4 p.m., officials said. A collision with another boat is not suspected.

Officials with the DNR, the Hall County Sheriff’s Office Dive Team, and the Hall County Fire Department are conducting the search.

The annual Pirates of Lanier Charity Poker Run event at Lake Lanier posted Friday on Facebook about the accident.

“The Lanier Partners would like to send our deepest thoughts and prayers to the families of those involved in an accident on Lake Lanier today. The accident involved part of our poker run family and we are with heavy hearts tonight,” the post read in part.

Read and sign the online guestbook for the Lake Lanier boat accident victims

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