Relatives ID 2 Missing Individuals Recovered From Upper Red Lake

November 28, 2017 02:25 PM

Authorities in Beltrami County said they have recovered the bodies of two missing individuals, last reported to have been fishing on Upper Red Lake.

Relatives and authorities have identified the victims as 30-year-old Melissa Seidenstricker of Princeton and 29-year-old Zeth Knyphausen of Stacy. 


The Beltrami County Sheriff's Department said the bodies were recovered from the lake Monday afternoon.

The department had earlier reported that a submerged ATV with pink camouflage matching the description of one belonging to two missing people has been located.

The ATV was discovered after authorities found a hole in the ice on the lake; they then used sonar technology to detect its presence.

Additional items located near the open water led rescuers to believe the two missing individuals were in the water.

The two had traveled to Rogers Resort on the lake's south shore. The resort is located in Shotley Township, about 60 miles north of Bemidji.

The sheriff's department was called about 9:30 p.m. Sunday by a friend of one of the individuals who reported they had not returned from the resort as previously planned.

The pair had rented a sleeper fish house from the resort through noon Sunday. They did not return to the resort, and authorities found a truck that had been driven by Knyphausen parked nearby.  

Christopher Knyphausen is Zeth's cousin and helped him load up for the trip right after the family finished Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday. 

"He was an outdoorsman, he loved to fish and was excited to get everything prepared."

Knyphausen and Seidenstricker join 235 other Minnesotans whom the Department of Natural Resources says have lost their lives during cold water-related accidents since 1982. Authorities say once glacial water makes contact with skin, it sends people into cold shock quickly and causes an immediate loss of breath control.

Authorities offered up a warning heading into winter that ice needs to be at least 4 inches thick to safely walk on, about 5 inches thick for a snowmobile, and more than that for a car or small truck. Find the DNR's ice safety page here.


Frank Rajkowski and Beth McDonough

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