Diver finds prosthetic leg in California river, returns it to owner

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Divers made a rare and fortuitous find while searching for lost items along a California river when they found a prosthetic leg and were able to return it to its owner.

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The American River Lost and Found divers typically find cellphones, watches and sunglasses beneath the water but during a recent search, Karl Bly and Matt Spruitenburg found John Hovis’ leg, which he lost while rafting on the river Memorial Day weekend, KOVR reported.

“A leg,” Bly said. “It’s virtually worthless to anybody else, but it’s so valuable to the person who owns it.”

Finds of the day... Some Apple watches and a Prosthetic Leg!!

Posted by American River Lost & Found on Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Hovis said a stranger helped him after getting caught in the rapids. He was not able to even try and search for the missing prosthetic appendage.

“I knew I was hitting the rapids right there, but I didn’t know it was going to shoot me up out of the water,” Hovis said. “I already made a doctor’s appointment to get a referral and get a new leg made.”

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Hovis was grateful for the find.

“I greatly appreciate what you did, man” Hovis said.

It’s not the first time divers with the group have found a prosthetic limb. They found another leg last summer and were able to return it too. They said they would like to now find the good Samaritan who rescued Hovis on the rapids last week.