Missing British kayaker found dead in lake as tributes paid to 'incredible human'

Lake Maggiore
-Credit: (Image: Slow Images)


A man was found dead after he got into difficulty while kayaking in Switzerland. Bren Orton was last seen on May 16 and his remains were found two weeks later in Lake Maggiore which straddles Switzerland and Italy.

The 29-year-old was popular on social media where he shared updates on his adventures. Tributes have been paid to Bren following his death, with one person describing him as an "incredible human."

Former kayaker, James Reeves, said in a statement on Facebook: "Every few years we seem to lose a friend to our sport. Each loss is tough, and this one cuts deep.

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"Bren Orton was an incredible human. From his teenage years, his warm smile and friendly nature shone as brightly as his kayaking skills … I was privileged to briefly mentor Bren in his early years, and then watched in awe as he rose to became one of the greatest white-water kayakers ever."

Bren, who had almost 60,000 followers on Instagram, was described as "an inspiration" by one follower, The Mirror reports. They added: "A real life gentleman, an inspiration, and world class. On to the next Adventure Bren Orton Thank you and goodbye."

Another said: "Everyone dies but not Everyone lives. You truly Sent it brother. The world wasn’t strong enough to hold you. See you on the other side, till then I’ll look for your wisdom in the flows of the river."

When Bren first went missing, Swiss Police said: "While kayaking with a group on the Melezza River in Switzerland, Bren became trapped in a recirculating feature and did not resurface. Authorities and friends are tirelessly continuing their search efforts."

They added on Thursday, May 30: "Shortly before 1pm in Locarno, the lifeless body of the man who disappeared on 16 May while kayaking in the Melezza was found in the waters of Lake Maggiore. The alarm was triggered by a sailor who found the body in the water and immediately notified the emergency services."

Bren had navigated through some of the world's most remote and challenging locations, establishing the British record for the longest kayak drop (128 feet) at Mexico's Big Banana Falls.