Missing Rev.'s body found after kayak mishap

June 15, 2009 7:02:05 AM PDT
A body found in the Brandywine Creek over the weekend is that of a missing Presbyterian minister.

The Reverend Chad Miller had gone kayaking with his brother Christopher on Tuesday.

Their kayaks were pulled under, in the storm-swollen creek. Christopher's body was found that same day.

Reverend Miller's body was discovered on Saturday.

Brothers Christopher and Chad Miller went under in the Brandywine Creek near the Route 52 Bridge in East Bradford Township on Tuesday, June 9. They were swept up in the currents during thunderstorms, and went over a dam.

The body of Christopher Miller, of Yonkers, New York, was found on June 9. His brother Chad, an associate pastor at Westminster Presbyterian in Wilmington, wasn't found until the weekend.

Chad Miller's congregation is said to be devastated. The 34-year-old's easy smile and booming laugh led the church's mission and youth ministries.

"He had a passion for helping people, always concerned about homeless, people who are hurting, social justice issues," said Dr. Gregory Jones of Westminster Presbyterian.

In a written statement, the operator of a picnic park near the dam said the two men came from upstream and were not patrons. However, an employee saw them and warned them to get off the rising river. But, the operator said, the pair ignored the plea.

Doug Eglington, a boater familiar with the Brandywine, said there are warning signs above the dam, and normally one can hear the roard of the water.

"You hear the falls in advance, but with that kind of churning water maybe they didn't hear it," Eglington said. "It's a known hazard."

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