Body found inside truck recovered from Lake Thunderbird may be missing elderly man 

NORMAN, Okla. -- Authorities believe a body recovered from a lake on Saturday evening may related to a missing persons case.

Agent Steve Tanner with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) said a truck found around 4:45 p.m. Saturday near the Hog Creek Ramp at Lake Thunderbird. Inside the truck was the body of a man who authorities believe to be Charles French, a 75-year-old man last seen on May 2.

 

Charles French

"We don’t have positive identification of the person that’s inside of the vehicle right now, but based on the circumstances and stuff...it’s going to be a pretty good guess that it is," Agent Tanner explained.

According to Agent Tanner, French borrowed the white GMC pick-up from a friend to move belongings from Grady County to Cleveland County. It's unclear just how long the truck had been in the lake before it was recovered on Saturday.

"The Oklahoma Highway Patrol routinely does these types of searches and we do have some information from witnesses about people running into something and not knowing what it was," said Tanner.

Jeremy Meehan said for the past two weeks, he and wife have backed their boat into the truck initially assuming it was a rock. They did not think anything of it at first.

"After two weeks of feeling the same thing, we actually ran into somebody else who sonared it and they seen something and that’s when the law enforcement was called," Meehan explained. "It’s pretty creepy knowing you’re backing over a submerged vehicle."

Meehan said he's glad they called on Saturday and hope the man's family gets closure.

According to Agent Tanner, they are waiting for an autopsy to positively identify the body. At this point, it's too soon to determine whether foul play was involved.