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December 16, 2013
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Body, identified as Brandon Bell, found in South Umpqua River

The body of a missing Winston man was found in the South Umpqua River near Pepsi Road Sunday afternoon, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office said today.

Brandon Scott Bell, 26, unexpectedly left his grandparents’ home in the 600 block of Winston Section Road in the early hours of Nov. 21.

A member of the Douglas County Search and Rescue team discovered a body submerged in 4 to 5 feet of water in the river around 1:30 p.m. Sunday, officials said. The body was recovered and identified as Bell.

His death is being investigated as a suicide, officials said.

Investigators said they believe Bell placed heavy rocks in his jacket pocket and walked into the river.

His mother, Sherise Gordon, flew out from Louisiana on Nov. 24 to assist deputies in the search.

Bell grew up in Winston and then moved to Eugene for college. He moved to Louisiana before returning to Winston in early October.

Family members declined to comment this morning.

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The News-Review Updated Dec 16, 2013 07:13PM Published Dec 18, 2013 08:56PM Copyright 2013 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.