An autopsy has determined that the body recovered 150 yards off the O Street beach in Thursday is a Bayonne man who disappeared in the surf after being hit by a wave.
Forensic pathologist Dr. Hydow Park ruled that Bestavros Faris, 18, died of accidental drowning, Ocean County Prosecutor Marlene Lynch Ford said today.
"At this time I would like to extend condolences to the friends and family of Mr. Faris," Ford said.
Faris and three other friends weren't on the beach Wednesday afternoon more than five minutes before three of the men ventured into the water, a witness told police.
"He watched them on the beach for a short time," Seaside Park Patrolman Steven Shadiack said."One stayed ankle-deep. The others went from ankle-deep to waist-high, then chest-high. The wave came. Three went under the water and only two came up. That's how fast it was. It didn't take long to have a tragedy like this."
The body was discovered by the New Jersey State Police's Special Operations Section about 150 yards southeast of the O Street beach, Shadiack said.
State Police had been searching the area with a side-scan sonar device towed by a 23-foot patrol boat. State Police Lt. Stephen Jones said.
The body was discovered submerged in 18 feet of water, he said.
"The troopers on that detail are true experts with the side-scan equipment," Jones said. "Body recovery is never pleasant, but the families of the vicitms need closure."
The Seaside Park beaches were still unguarded on Wednesday. Ironically, guards came on full-time summer duty on Thursday, according to a schedule compiled months ago. Signs were posted on the beach on Wednesday warning bathers to swim at their own risk, Shadiack said.