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Name released of Paynesville man who drown in Rice Lake

PAYNESVILLE -- The name of the 73-year-old rural Paynesville man who was found unresponsive Wednesday in Rice Lake has been released by the Stearns County Sheriff's office.

Lee Hackert's body was discovered between a pontoon and the lift wheel for the pontoon lift and was brought to shore by deputies and Paynesville police officers who responded to his home at 24604 165th St. in Eden Lake Township around 6 p.m. Wednesday.

According to information released by Sheriff John Sanner, the Ramsey County Medical Examiner's office determined that the cause of death was fresh water drowning.

The address is about 4½ miles east of Paynesville on Rice Lake.

The law enforcement officers responded to the home for a welfare check after Hackert's wife reported that she could no longer see him or the vehicle he was driving.

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