Missing Teen Found Dead

(NationRise.com) – Carson Hughes, an 18-year-old who went missing while visiting a state park in Indiana, was found dead in the park’s lake on March 17th.

Hughes was originally reported missing on March 15th after his tripod and camera were found near a pond. His truck and kayak were also still in the parking lot. Indiana Thermal Recovery, an animal rescue group in the area, reported “something isn’t right” after his father discovered his abandoned belongings. He called 911 shortly after.

His body was discovered after searchers used sonar technologies to find him six feet under the surface of Versailles Lake in Versailles State Park. The coroner’s preliminary cause of death concluded that he died from cold water drowning. They could not find signs of injury. However, the final autopsy report is awaiting a toxicology screening before it is released.

Hughes had already begun making a name for himself as a wildlife photographer despite his young age. He had thousands of followers on social media, including nearly 20,000 on Facebook alone. His father, Jason Huges, said his son found a passion for photography during a childhood family trip. He took a few pictures of nature and wildlife and was immediately hooked. He also gained notoriety after capturing a video of the Northern Lights during a rare appearance in Indiana. He began selling his photos at a local festival in 2023. According to his father, Hughes sold all of his pictures and had backorders for 20 more.

Hughes also attended Jac-Cen-Del High School. The school honored his memory on March 19th by showcasing his photos on its sign. Several students also remembered him by leaving notes of gratitude and remembrance in the school’s parking lot.

His father found a note in his wallet after discussing his goal to achieve 10,000 followers on his Instagram account. It has since soared to nearly 30,000 followers. His final post featured two shots of a rare leucistic bald eagle.

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