Search for missing teen on Yellowstone River shifts to recovery

Posted at 3:20 PM, Aug 01, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-02 17:20:43-04

PARK COUNTY – The search for the teenage son of a Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Captain — missing since a Friday boating accident on the Yellowstone River — entered its third day on Sunday.

Park County Sheriff Scott Hamilton said in a Facebook post that since Friday, nearly 150 people have been involved in the search for James Anderson, son of Captain Jim Anderson. Sheriff Hamilton also said on Sunday there were “13 boat teams, 20 ground crew, 8 dogs, 3 divers, 7 comms, a helicopter, and a drone searching the river from the 89 North Bridge to Columbus.”

The search began Friday night when authorities were notified around 7 p.m. of a capsized drift boat near the U.S. Highway 89 North Bridge on the Yellowstone River.

Law enforcement confirmed on Saturday that Captain Anderson’s wife, Angie, died at the scene. Captain Anderson and his daughter were able to make it to shore safely, but James could not be found.

Sheriff Hamilton said on Facebook that the tragic involvement of Captain Anderson’s family made the search especially tough on all involved.

“Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Captain Jim Anderson is a well-known and respected member of the law enforcement community. We grieve with Jim for his wife Angie as we continue our search for his son, James,” he wrote.

Sheriff Hamilton also expressed thanks for the assistance provided by several agencies, including: Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Sweet Grass County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Lewis & Clark County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Stillwater County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Yellowstone County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Rosebud County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Flathead County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Broadwater County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Cascade County Sheriff’s Office & SAR; Madison County Sheriff’s Officer and SAR; Gallatin and Park County Emergency Management; Gallatin and Park County Chaplains; Salvation Army; Montana Highway Patrol; Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks; Western Montana Search Dogs; True North Search Dogs; Hiline Productions; Whistler Towing; Two Bear Air Rescue; Rocky Mountain Rotors and the Air Force Rescue Coordination Center.

The closed portion of the Yellowstone River will re-open at 9 p.m. Sunday night, and smaller teams will continue the search as it transitions to recovery, according to Sheriff Hamilton.

In an earlierFacebook post, Sheriff Hamilton wrote:

Sheriff Brian Gootkin said it all when he said, ‘Family is everything.’ Those listed above are only a small part of our family of emergency responders. I would like to thank Gallatin County Sheriff Brian Gootkin and his outstanding team of professionals, as well as all the other Sheriffs and agencies, for their tremendous support with this mission and others over the past few weeks.