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Ventura man identified as deceased diver found in Seal Cove area

22-108 Divers at Mouth of Cave_.jpg
Posted at 2:51 PM, Dec 07, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-07 18:10:45-05

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office Coroner’s Bureau has confirmed the identity of the deceased diver who was recovered from the area of Seal Cove on Nov. 11, 2022.

The decedent is 31-year-old Ryder Sturt of Ventura who was reported missing on Nov. 29, 2020.

Sturt was diving for lobster on Nov. 29, 2020, when he failed to resurface. His dive partner radioed for help from the Coast Guard, and despite hours of searching, Sturt was never found.

His remains were recovered from the water near Painted Cave Preserve on Santa Cruz Island last month.

Investigators reportedly utilized rapid DNA technology to confirm the diver's identity.

Sheriff's officials say they were notified of the remains on Saturday, Nov. 5, by two recreational divers who spotted the body near the ocean floor in an underwater cave in the Seal Cove area.

The sheriff's office worked with several other regional agencies to plan a recovery operation. That operation took place on Friday, Nov. 11, and the remains were recovered.