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Man Dies, Apparently While Diving For Errant Golf Balls

April 17, 1985

GULFPORT, Fla. (AP) _ A body clad in a wetsuit and draped with bags of golf balls was pulled from a lake near the 11th hole at the Pasadena Yacht and Country Club, police said.

The bearded man, in his late 30s or early 40s, probably had been in the water three or four days, police Lt. Frank Hanson said. The body carried no identification, Hanson said Monday.

It was found Sunday by Ken Wohlgemuth, grounds superintendent.

Wohlegemuth said the body was clad in a rubber-like wetsuit complete with hood, mask and weighted diving belt. He said it was draped with two mesh bags partially filled with golf balls.

Bud Quandt, a groundskeeper, said that for 17 years one diver had worked the course, recovering lost golf balls from the 11 lakes. But he said poaching had lately become a problem, with the hired diver complaining about not finding as many balls as usual and discovering footprints on lake bottoms.

Hanson said part of the body had been eaten away. He said investigators had not ruled out the possibility that that was a sign of an alligator attack, but said it was more likely fish got to the man after he died.

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