A 54-year-old Granite City man drowned Saturday evening after falling through the ice on a frozen pond on Chouteau Island in Madison while trying to retrieve a small drone aircraft that had crashed.
Mark A. Miller was last seen near the entrance to Low Water Dam, shortly before 6 p.m. Saturday by his 11-year-old son; Miller’s body was recovered at 2:10 a.m. Sunday. Coroners Investigator Sakina Hall pronounced Miller dead on scene at 2:11 a.m., according to a statement issued by Steve Nonn, the Madison County coroner.
Miller was flying drones with his son when one of the drones malfunctioned and crashed on the ice. Miller told his son to sit in their vehicle while he went to retrieve the drone.
The boy sat in the vehicle for about three hours before the vehicle ran out of gas. The boy left the car and began walking to get help. A concerned motorist saw the boy walking along West Chain of Rocks Road, picked him up and took him to the Madison County Sheriff’s Department substation in Mitchell at 9:03 p.m., when a deputy sheriff who was at the substation initiated the investigation.