Michael Ramirez. Photo from his band’s Facebook page

A body found Saturday by a camper at the Kern River was identified as Orange County rapper Michael Ramirez, who disappeared into the rain-swollen river while celebrating his 27th birthday.

Ramirez’s girlfriend Erica Zambada told reporters Sunday that the Kern County coroner’s office confirmed the body found Saturday was Ramirez.

“Gone too soon,” wrote Annette Huggins on Facebook. “He was such a funny guy and always so kind. Rest In Peace Michael.”

Ramirez disappeared into the notoriously dangerous river on Thursday, June 22, after he decided to take a dip, the Orange County Register reported.

“It was 115 degrees,”  Zambada, 25, told the newspaper. “Michael jumped in to cool down. He’s a fish — he loves to swim. He said, ‘The water is calm.’ But then an undercurrent swept him away.”

Christ Caballero, Ramirez’s partner in the popular underground group Rebellion Warfare, reacted quickly, plunging in and attempting to reach his friend,

“I got within a foot of him, but pockets of current acted like a suction, pulling him under,” Caballero, 28, who lives in Anaheim, told the Register. “I saw his head bob up one more time, and then I didn’t see him again.”

A Kern County Sheriff’s Department search-and-rescue unit arrived within 10 minutes, Zambada said. Team members combed the area by land and air until sundown and continued the search throughout the weekend, she said.


—City News Service

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