By Carol Vaughn —
The body of a Fruitland, Md., man who died when the truck he was driving plunged off the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel in December was found Friday on a North Carolina beach.
A Facebook page dedicated to “Finding Erik Mezick” said the family was notified Friday his body was found.
“We said he would present himself when he was ready and in true Eric (sic) style he did just that today on his favorite beach!” a post on the page said.
A body, later confirmed by his brother to be Mezick’s, was found on a beach at Cape Hatteras National Seashore, between Salvo and Avon, Friday morning, according to reports by WVEC-TV and the Virginian-Pilot.
The National Park Service reported an Outer Banks resident spotted the body on the beach around 9:15 a.m. Friday, according to the reports.
The remains were being transferred to the North Carolina Medical Examiner’s Office.
Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel officials identified Mezick as the driver of a box truck that plunged into the Chesapeake Bay during a northbound crossing Dec. 29 at around 8:20 a.m.
The truck was owned by Cloverland Green Spring Dairy.
Mezick was seen exiting the truck into the water after the crash.
An extensive but unsuccessful search after the crash covered about 178 square miles and involved multiple Coast Guard crews from Cape Charles, the Coast Guard Cutter Hawk, and the Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., according to a press release from the Coast Guard.
Boat and shore crews from the Maritime Incident Response Team, Virginia Resources Commission, Virginia Beach Fire Department, and Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel Police also assisted in the search.
After the multi-agency search was called off, Mezick’s brother, Kevin Mezick, and volunteers continued searching for his body.
The crash was the 16th case of a vehicle going over the side of the bridge-tunnel, according to CBBT records and a report in the Virginian-Pilot.
Mezick, 47, left behind a wife of 24 years and two children, according to the Facebook page.