Rock Drummer Chuck Morris and His Son Feared Dead, Went Missing During Kayak Trip
Chuck Morris, the percussionist for the band Lotus, and his son Charley Morris are feared dead after they went missing during a kayaking trip in Arkansas. They went missing while kayaking in the Beaver Lake reservoir and were reported missing on March 16. The search began as a rescue mission, but it has now pivoted toward recovery. Morris and his band are based in Denver.
The effort involves dive crews, boats, and dogs from multiple state agencies, Benton County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Lt. Shannon Jenkins told CBS News Colorado. "We're still out there," Jenkins told the outlet on Tuesday. "We've been continuing our efforts over the last five days and unfortunately we haven't located them yet."
We were all hoping for a miracle, but at this point, the search for Chuck & Charley has moved to a recovery. With help from K9 teams, there is a probable location on the lake, but logistical challenges including temp, weather, and depth have prevented a recovery thus far. (1/3) pic.twitter.com/EZ9Z24pcQx— Lotus (@LotusTweets) March 21, 2023
Water temperature at the lake dropped to the 30s and 40s in recent days, which is one reason why officials believe this is now a recovery mission. "This lake is a serious challenge to search but we're doing everything we can," Tony Wade, director of operations for the volunteer group Cajun Coast Search and Rescue, told CBS News Colorado. People "instantly go into shock" when the lake temperature gets that cold, Wade said, adding that this is "100% a recovery effort."
Lotus also told their fans that Morris and his son are feared dead. "We were all hoping for a miracle, but at this point, the search for Chuck & Charley has moved to a recovery," the band said in a statement Tuesday. "With help from K9 teams, there is a probable location on the lake, but logistical challenges including temp, weather, and depth have prevented a recovery thus far." While they are grieving, the group plans to "celebrate Chuck and Charley's lives, our memories with them, and what they meant to so many people."
The band also shared a link to a GoFundMe fundraiser to support Morris' wife and family. Organizers are hosting a prayer vigil at the Denver Waldorf School on Thursday at 6 p.m. So far, more than 1,800 donors have raised a combined $121,000.
The band's fans shared their condolences with Morris' family. "Offering my condolences to the Morris family & the band. Wishing you the deepest sense of peace, comfort [and] strength to get through the difficult times ahead," one person tweeted. "Sending healing vibes to the band and chuck and Charlie's family," another wrote.
Lotus is an electronic jam band that formed in Indiana, but they are now mostly based in Denver. The group's other members are guitarist Tim Palmieri, bassist/synth player Jesse Miller, drummer Mike Greenfield, and guitarist/keyboardist Luke Miller. The band has several tour dates planned, including a set at Resonate Suwannee on March 31 in Live Oak, Florida.