Body of man in his 60s found in Victoria’s Gonzales Bay while still in his kayaking clothes

Body of man in his 60s found in Victoria's Gonzales Bay while still in his kayaking clothes

WATCH:  A few more details are emerging that led to the discovery of a man’s body in Victoria’s Gonzales Bay Tuesday afternoon. Officials believe the kayaker, a man in his 60’s, left the Oak Bay Marina boat launch sometime Monday.  As Mary Griffin reports, the conditions on the water at the time were rough.


A Victoria fire rescue boat combs the waters of Gonzales Bay Wednesday afternoon.

Just 24 hours earlier, the body of a man in his 60s is found in the water in the 1800 block of Crescent Road.

Officials are concerned there may be others in trouble, and search the area.

The call came to the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre shortly before three o’clock, according to Major Justin Olsen.

“We didn’t find anything. No evidence of the kayak, no evidence of any other people,” said Olsen.

From Ogden Point to Gonzales Beach, searchers scanned the shoreline in difficult conditions.

“Yesterday we had very changeable weather. During the search, we had a strong wind blowing, with five-foot waves,” Olsen said.

It’s believed the man put his kayak in the water at the Oak Bay Marina sometime Monday.

He parked his vehicle in the lot, but nothing indicated anything wrong until Tuesday afternoon.

It’s not the first time kayakers get into serious trouble in the waters off Victoria.

On April 14th, 2002, two overturned kayaks in Gonzales Bay signal something is desperately wrong.

A man in the water is screaming for help.  Just minutes earlier, his kayak, and his friend’s flipped in the rough seas.

Passengers from a whale watching boat pull him to safety, but his companion, 42-year-old Steve Viozza is never found.

Witness Norman Marcy said the two men were not prepared for the conditions. “They didn’t have any floatation devices. No lifejackets. No wetsuits. No gear.”

Meanwhile, back on Gonzales Beach, paddle boarder Brian Ray Paddle packs an emergency kit every time he heads out on the water.

“Got the radio in there, waterproof radio. Got a first aid book, first aid kit, flashlight, whistle.”

Equipped to last hours if he has to, Raymer knows what could happen.

“You wouldn’t want to be out there more than half an hour, probably. That might be even a long time to continue swimming. After an hour, you’re probably hypothermic,” Raymer said.

The man’s identity has not been released, and the B.C. Coroner’s Service is investigating the cause of death.

Mary GriffinMary Griffin

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