MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Chisago County authorities have identified the man who apparently jumped into the St. Croix River from a rock ledge as 20-year-old Alex William Vitalis, of Shafer, Minn.
The Chisago County Sheriff’s Office said Vitalis’ body was recovered at noon on Tuesday from 41 feet of water.
Vitalis had leaped from the Franconia Landing on Monday and hadn’t been seen since.
The Chisago County Water Patrol and Taylors Falls Fire Department had started a search Monday in the vicinity of where the man jumped in. It was suspended at 9:30 p.m. due to darkness and had restarted at 6 a.m. on Tuesday.
The Chisago County Sheriff said the community is very close knit.
“Yeah, this is really tough,” Sheriff Rick Duncan said. “This is one of our community members in Chisago County. Even my son went to school with this gentleman so it’s tough on a community.”
The family declined to comment.
One thing to mention is this young man was an avid swimmer — he had been in this river many times before — so the sheriff’s office wants to remind people cliff diving is not safe. That current can change very quickly.