Body of N.J. man who drowned is recovered after  3-day search

Avinash Kuna

A June 1 birthday celebration on a rented pontoon boat turned deadly for a New Jersey man and his friends. Avinash Kuna, 32, of Parsippany, was celebrating with friends in Henderson Cove on Lake Hopatcong, when he jumped into the water for a swim, according to his friend, Jay Majeti. Although Kuna was wearing a life vest, he screamed that something was pulling him underwater and his life jacket came off.

“He started flailing and was gasping for air,” Majeti wrote on a GoFundMe page created to collect funds to ship Kuna’s body India. “We tried to help with the life vest but unfortunately he couldn’t reach to it,” he wrote. “Understanding that the situation is getting worse, one of our friends jumped into the water with a life vest but we had to pull him out since his vest came off too.

Avinash started to drown.” It was then that Kuna’s friends called 911 for help. Multiple rescue boats, divers, and a helicopter attempted to locate Kuna, but the search was hampered by weeds and weather, Majeti said. After three days of searching, police found his body in the lake on June 3.

Majeti said Kuna was “one of the very few people being loved by all his associates for his plain hearted nature and willingness to help others.”

He always cared for well-being of fellow people and the society, he wrote. Kuna had “high ambitions in life,” Majeti wrote, to become an entrepreneur, give back to the society, travel places around the globe etc.

“All dreams are now shattered with one tragic event.”

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