ONNA, Okinawa – The body of a 21-year-old airman, who went missing Saturday after he was swept out to sea by high waves while snorkeling, was recovered Sunday off the shore of Maeda Point. Rodolfo Garza, assigned to the emergency medical services at Kadena Air Base, was reported missing while snorkeling with his five friends at about 5:31 p.m. Saturday off the shore of the south side of the cliff in Onna Village, according to a spokesman for Japan Coast Guard in Naha.

Maeda Point is a popular diving and snorkeling spot on Okinawa’s western coast, said spokesman Eiji Ikeda.

One of the people in his group called the coast guard after Garza was caught in a rip current and washed away from one of the rocks, Ikeda said.

Search-and-rescue activities were conducted by the coast guard, Okinawa prefectural police, Kin Fire Station and Ryukyu Marine Rescue, a local volunteer group that responds to water accidents, he said.

At about 8:30 a.m. Sunday, divers from the coast guard found Garza’s body about 33 feet from shore, Ikeda said.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now