Fishermen found the body of Steven L. Hoffman about 11:20 p.m. Friday near a pier at the end of Cockpit Point Road, said Sgt. Kim Chinn, Prince William police spokeswoman.
The fishermen called police who removed Hoffman’s body from the river about 1:20 a.m. Saturday, Chinn said.
Hoffman, 43, of Dumfries, was found about 300 yards south of where the Potomac River initially claimed him as he swam with friends from a secluded beach near Tim’s Rivershore Restaurant, south of Leesylvania State Park.
Hoffman and others who had been celebrating at the river Thursday decided to wade out to a duck blind about 200 yards from the shore, witnesses at the scene said.
The river is shallow near the beach, but deepens to about eight feet near the duck blind, Chinn said.
One of Hoffman’s roommates, Lesa Livingston, said that Hoffman disappeared when he was halfway to the duckblind. Livingston said he had called out, “I can’t make it back.”
Hoffman was last seen about 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Chinn said.
Six Prince William police divers methodically searched the river until midnight Thursday and all day Friday, Chinn said.
“They search quadrants,” Chinn said, “They mark off a grid using landmarks on the shore and search the squares in the grid.”
Chinn said visibility was poor Friday in the murky 85-degree water.
Chinn said she believes Hoffman was the first to drown in the Potomac River this year.
Gregory Hoffman, Steven Hoffman’s brother, said that he mourns the loss of Steven, the last of his four brothers.
“When I was born I had four brothers. Now I don’t have any. There were a couple of car wrecks, a murder and now this,” Gregory Hoffman, 43, said from his home in Laurel, Del., on Sunday
Hoffman said his brother, who reveled in the approval of others and liked helping people, enjoyed summertime, large crowds and Maryland crabs.
Hoffman is survived by his brother, Gregory, and one sister, Diana Green of Edgewater, Md.
“He will be missed. May he rest in peace,” Gregory Hoffman said.