Authorities say death was natural

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 17, 2004

DEMOPOLIS – A Hale County man working on Corps of Engineers property in Demopolis was found dead late Monday afternoon.

As of press time, very few details about the man could be released because family members had not yet been notified of his death.

At least seven members of law enforcement were on the scene off Grand Ferry Road near the old firing range after a call came into police notifying them of the body. Co-workers apparently found the body when the reliable employee didn’t arrive back at the end of the day.

“He always was back,” said one person on the scene.

Jeff Manuel, public safety director and acting police chief, said there was little information that could be given about the discovery on Monday. He estimated the body had been there for a few hours before it was found. Manuel also said there was no indication of foul play anywhere near the scene, thus ruling out an investigation of the scene.

“It’s probably something natural, something like a heart attack,” Manuel said.

Members of the Corps of Engineers investigated the scene where the man’s body was found. One unidentified worker said the deceased man will be missed.

“He was the fun of the crop,” the fellow employee said. “He kept you laughing. He was a good fellow, and I had known him for three years.”

Few other details could be released, pending notification of the man’s family. One person on the scene said the deceased was from Sawyerville in Hale County.

Police lined off Grand Ferry Road, which runs past the Demopolis waste water treatment plant. The Marengo County Coroner was at the scene, where the man was pronounced dead.