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Missing Avery County man found deceased in car in a river

Last Updated on December 27, 2023 7:42 pm

A missing Avery County man was found deceased in a car in a river on Tuesday.

Barry Hertel, age 71, had been reported missing on Saturday, December 23, according to the Avery County Sheriff’s Office. He was last seen at Lowes Hardware in Banner Elk on Friday.

Tuesday morning a caller called Avery 911 about a vehicle in a river off Highway 194 near Sam Eller Road.

Officials found an unresponsive man in a silver car that was partially submerged in the river. The registration number for the vehicle confirmed it belonged to Hertel.

The NC State Highway Patrol is also investigating the scene.

Photo: Avery County Sheriff’s Office

Photo: Linville-Central Rescue Squad

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