Body of Inkster fisherman found in Lake Erie

James David Dickson
The Detroit News

An Inkster man who’d been reported missing after a fishing trip was found dead in about four feet of water in Lake Erie.

The body of Stanley Eliot Moore, 53, was located at about 5 p.m. Wednesday near Sterling State Park in Monroe, police say.

Moore and some of his family members were camping and fishing overnight at the park on Oct. 25 when Moore walked toward Lake Erie to fish at about 3 a.m. He was never seen alive again.

Park staffers searched the park for Moore, unsuccessfully. They found his personal belongings near a popular fishing area of the park.

His body was recovered after being spotted by the aviation unit of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office. Divers had searched for Moore unsuccessfully in the days after he went missing.

A sheriff’s department helicopter was being taken out for maintenance Wednesday afternoon, and flew over Lake Erie in the process. That’s when officials found Moore’s body, which was visible from the sky, said Detectove Mike Preadmore of the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.

Foul play is not suspected.

“This was a tragic event where a man went fishing and drowned,” Preadmore said.

This was not the first death at a Michigan state park this year, said Ron Olson, chief of parks and recreation for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, which manages state parks. Some people die in accidents. Some people commit suicide in state parks. Others are the victims of crimes, he said.

“We get 24 million visitors a year (in the state park system),” Olson said, “but very few incidents like this.”

Sterling State Park sits on 1,300 acres in Monroe County. It offers fishing, fish cleaning, biking, hiking and even metal detection opportunities to visitors. It is the only state park on Lake Erie, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, which manages the facility.