CANTON (CBS) – The body of a missing boater was found overnight in a pond in Canton after a desperate search.

Police and firefighters were called to Reservoir Pond in the area of Pleasant Circle around 8 p.m. Wednesday after witnesses said they saw a man in the water with his boat floating away from him.  One woman heard the man screaming and paddled out to him, but by the time she got to him, he went under. Those who live around the pond jumped in to help.

“Ten minutes after we made the 911 call there were like 10-to-12 kayakers and boaters out there searching,” one resident, who did not want to be named, told WBZ-TV. “When I was in the water for a short period of time I was surrounded by police officers, totally uniformed, in the water soaking wet and I’m pretty sure the chief was in there too.”

The State Police Air Wing and dive team were also called in.

“I tried to do whatever I could and, obviously, everyone else in the neighborhood did as well, but there wasn’t a whole lot we were able to do,” resident Jacin Diletizia told WBZ.

The man, later identified as 26-year-old Jimmy Paschal of Canton, was found dead around 2 a.m. Thursday. Authorities ruled his death an accident.

Reservoir Pond in Canton. (Photo credit: Lisa Gresci – WBZ-TV)

“It’s a murky pond, it’s got quite a bit of weed growth and silt and it’s very difficult visibility so the divers had a difficult time,” said Canton Fire Chief Charles Doody. “Our hearts go out to the family. It’s an awful thing to have to experience.”

“It’s a town where everybody knows everybody and we do know the family and our hearts go out, our condolences to the family,” Canton Police Chief Ken Berkowitz told reporters.

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