Body of Missing Seaside Park Swimmer Found

Bastafros Faris, 18, went missing after being pulled under by a rip current

By Brian Thompson and Gus Rosendale
|  Thursday, Jun 21, 2012  |  Updated 5:24 PM EDT
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An 18-year-old Bayonne, N.J. man was still missing Wednesday night after he was pulled into a rip current while swimming with three friends earlier in the day. Gus Rosendale reports.

Gus Rosendale

An 18-year-old Bayonne, N.J. man was still missing Wednesday night after he was pulled into a rip current while swimming with three friends earlier in the day. Gus Rosendale reports.

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The body of an 18-year-old Bayonne, N.J. man who went missing while swimming off Seaside Park has been found, officials said.

Bastafros Faris was pulled from the water just after 1 p.m. Thursday, authorities said. Police and U.S. Coast Guard officials used sonar to locate him and divers pulled the body up about 150 yards offshore, near O Street Beach where he disappeared Wednesday.

His friends and family had kept vigil on the beach into the night, crying and praying as they waited for news.

"The wave grabbed him far away from me," friend Andrew Messiha told NBC 4 New York. "I was standing near the shore. He called for help but no one came because there was no lifeguard."

Faris and his friends were sucked into the currents late Wednesday afternoon; rescuers managed to retrieve the three other swimmers.

"It's very unusual to deal with these rip currents this time of year," said Police Chief Francis Larkin. "Usually, it's hurricane season in September."

Family and friends who were gathered on the beach Thursday after Faris was found declined to speak with NBC 4 New York.

About 20 miles north along the shore in Asbury Park, a 23-year-old swimmer also drowned Wednesday. Officials said he and another friend had gone swimming after lifeguards left for the day, and were caught in the rip current.

The friend was rescued.

Rescuers elsewhere along the Jersey Shore were busy responding to near-drownings from the strong rip currents. In Perth Amboy, two children were rescued from the water by a 36-year-old bystander and his 17-year-old son. The Good Samaritans were able to successfully administer CPR on one of the children.

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