Orange County firefighters and sheriff's rescue divers found the body of the missing fisherman in Lake Irvine. Photo courtesy of the Orange  County Fire Authority
Orange County firefighters and sheriff’s rescue divers found the body of the missing fisherman in Lake Irvine. Photo courtesy of the Orange County Fire Authority

An Orange County Sheriff’s Department diving team on Sunday found the body of a man who fell off a pontoon boat while fishing with a friend on Irvine Lake.

Clarence William Brumfield, 61, of Palmdale, was found about 11:15 a.m. in about 25 feet of water, near the location he was last seen, authorities said.

Rescuers were notified about 5:45 p.m. Saturday Brumfield, who was not wearing a life jacket, had gone overboard and could not be found, said Capt. William Lackey of the Orange County Fire Authority.

Brumfield’s companion told rescuers that he heard a splash at the back of the boat, tried to help pull his buddy back into the boat, and got pulled into the water. But neither man could swim very well, Lackey said.

The friend grabbed the boat’s anchor line, but Brumfield went under, according to the captain.

There were life jackets aboard the boat, but neither man was wearing one, Lackey said.

Divers and a helicopter crew continued the search at daybreak.

An autopsy is scheduled this week to determine the cause of death and if Brumfield had any pre-existing medical condition.

— City News Service contributed to this report.

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