Body Found in Passaic River identified

Parsippany Rescue and Recovery was part of the search team

MORRIS COUNTY — Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp and Long Hill Township Police Chief Michael Mazzeo report that the body found in the Passaic River on Wednesday, March 18 has been positively identified as David Bird (55, when reported missing) who has been the subject of an ongoing missing person investigation.

Dr. Carlos A Fonseca of the Morris County Medical Examiner’s Office, and forensic ondotologist Mitchell M. Kirshbaum, DDS have positively identified the body found as that of David Bird. Identification was made through dental records. At this time, the Medical Examiner’s investigation into the cause and manner of death is ongoing.

On Wednesday, March 18, at approximately 5:00 p.m. two men canoeing in the Passaic River came across a red jacket located near branches. They immediately notified Bernards Township Police Department. Police later determined the existence of human remains and a multi-agency recovery operation commenced to include members of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office, the Long Hill Township Police Department, theParsippany Rescue and Recovery Team,  Bernards Township Police Department, the Liberty Corner Fire Department, Millington Fire Department, the the Morris County Sheriff’s Office, the Morris County Park Police, Berkeley Heights Fire Department, Whippany Fire Department, Boonton Township Fire Department, Morris County Fire Coordinator, Denville Dive Team, Liberty Corner First Aid Squad. The following agencies supplied boats for the recovery: Whippany Fire Department, Millington Fire Department and Berkeley Heights Fire Department.

The search for David Bird began on Saturday, January 11, 2014 when he was last seen leaving his home on Long Hill Road, in the Millington section of Long Hill Township to take a walk.

The Long Hill Township Police Department had been the lead agency in this missing person investigation with assistance from the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office.

The following agencies were involved in the initial search: Long Hill Township Police Department, Morris County Sheriff’s Office, Morris County Department of Law and Public Safety-Office of Emergency Management, New Jersey State Police, Morris County Park Police, Harding Township Police Department, Bernards Township Police Department, Warren Township Police Department, New Jersey State Park Police, Bergen County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Millington Fire Department, Stirling Fire Department, Warren Fire Department, Liberty Corner Fire Department, New Vernon Fire Department, Chatham Township Fire Department, New Providence Fire Department, Berkeley Heights Fire Department, Somerset County Department of Public Safety, Parsippany Search Rescue and Recovery, Whippany Swift Water, Boonton Dive Team, Pequannock Dive Team, Jefferson Dive Team, Picatinny Dive Team, U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife, United States Veterans Administration Police and Fire – Lyons, NJ, Long Hill First Aid Squad, Long Hill Township Office of Emergency Management, the Salvation Army, Long Hill Community Emergency Response Team Volunteers, and the Warren Township Community Emergency Response Team.