Body found in Watauga Lake positively identified as that of Boone, N.C. man

From Staff Reports

   BUTLER -- A body found floating in Watauga Lake last week by two fishermen was positively identified Thursday as that of James Elliot Lanza, 50, of Boone, N.C., according to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency.
   An autopsy coordinated through the Johnson County Sheriff's Department, the Quillen College of Medicine, and the District Attorney's office determined that the body was that of Lanza, who was determined to be missing on May 11 when his boat was found abandoned near Midway Marina.
   At the time of Lanza's disappearance, Johnson County Sheriff's Department officers and TWRA officials searched for the body but weren't able to locate it. On May 29, another search was conducted, this time using cadaver dogs.
   Officials speculated the body had been on the bottom of the lake for some time and had floated to the surface not long before it was discovered.