Man dies while diving at Silver Glen Springs
Published: Saturday, August 3, 2013 at 9:35 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, August 3, 2013 at 9:35 p.m.
A 23-year-old Altamonte Springs man has died while diving in Silver Glen Springs, at the eastern edge of the Ocala National Forest.
Jason Yeh was reported missing at about 3 p.m. Friday, and his body was found by members of the Marion County Sheriff's Office Underwater Recovery Team around 10 a.m. Saturday.
Dive team leader Lt. Dennis Joiner said the body was in 30 feet of water in an area of limited visibility in a cavern 20 to 25 yards from the main boil area. Yeh, a free diver who had visited Silver Glen Springs on previous occasions, was wearing shorts, a mask, a snorkel and fins, and was using a flashlight.
According to deputies, Yeh and his girlfriend, Erica Cannon, 26, also of Altamonte Springs, were together at Silver Glen Springs on Friday when the man decided to go diving.
After not seeing him for some time, Cannon called 911.
Yeh's parents were at the springs Saturday morning. When they arrived, Yeh's mother, Wanda Yeh, pleaded to be allowed to watch the search.
From the shore, his father, Michael Yeh, called out in Chinese. Wanda Yeh, later said her husband was shouting that mommy and daddy were there and that he was calling their son's name and telling him to come home.
Shortly after 9 a.m., the dive team picked up the search, which had begun Friday afternoon by boat, from a helicopter and by foot along the shore. The Lake County Sheriff's Office and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission provided assistance.
The dive team found the body within an hour.
The diver's parents were escorted to a picnic area, and the divers brought the body to shore at 10:20 a.m.
Yeh's mother said he was their only child. He was born in Huntsville, Ala., and spent his earliest years in Taiwan, where his father is from. The family came back to Alabama when Yeh was 3 and moved to Altamonte Springs when he was 6.
Yeh grew up there, where the family owned a restaurant. They have since sold the business, his mother said.
Yeh, who was working as a waiter, had completed his AA degree and was enrolled at the University of Central Florida to study mechanical engineering. He was very outgoing and liked to build things, she said. He did daring things, like skydiving, and enjoyed swimming and paintball.
The family lived together in an apartment in Altamonte Springs. Cannon lives downstairs from them.
The Silver Glen Springs recreational area remained closed for the remainder of Saturday.
Contact Austin L. Miller at 867-4118 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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