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Body Found in Wailoa River

by Thunda

Hawai‘i Island police are investigating the discovery of a body found on the edge of Wailoa River in Hilo.

On Friday morning, August 4, 2023, shortly after 9:00 a.m., South Hilo patrol officers, Hawai‘i Fire Department personnel, and Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Conservation and Resources Enforcement (DOCARE) officers responded to the Wailoa River in Hilo, for a report of a body located in shallow water near the makai side river’s edge.

Responding personnel located the lifeless body in the area between the Kamehameha Statue and the Ironworks Building, just upstream from the Wailoa Small Boat Harbor.

Hawai’i Fire Department and DOCARE personnel assisted in extracting the body from the water. Area I Criminal Investigation Section personnel responded to the scene to continue this investigation, which is currently classified as a coroner’s inquest.

The victim has been tentatively identified as a 64-year-old Hilo man; however, positive identification is pending, and police are withholding his identity pending notification of next of kin.  

The victim was transported to the Hilo Medical Center and officially pronounced dead at 11:11 a.m.

Police do not suspect foul play at this time; however, an autopsy has been scheduled for early next week to determine the exact cause of death.

Police ask anyone who may have information relative to this case to call the police department’s non-emergency number at (808) 935-3311, or Blaine Morishita of the Area I Criminal Investigation Section at (808) 961-2380 or email

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