Tragic discovery in search for missing swimmer
THE search for missing Cairns woman Madison Tam has come to a tragic end.
After days of arduous efforts in dangerous terrain by police, firefighters, SES volunteers and members of the Babinda community, the 18-year-old's body was discovered at 1pm this afternoon by a local resident who had been helping in the search.
The White Rock student disappeared under the water while swimming in the notorious Devil's Pool area of the Boulders on Monday afternoon.
Far North police Det Acting Insp Jason Smith said emergency services crews had worked tirelessly to find Ms Tam and return her to her family.
"We're really pleased we can return this poor girl's body and give some closure during this investigation," he said.
"This has affected the entire local community, who have all come together to support emergency services and the family in this difficult time.
"We've spoken to the mum and dad and let them know the result."
The dangerous nature of the Devil's Pool area, which has claimed at least 17 lives in 60 years, protracted the search efforts.
Det Acting Insp Smith said her body was just a few metres downstream from where she had last been seen.
"The water was very deep, underneath the water there was a lot of cavities, places where it's too dangerous to dive," he said.
"The part we targeted was only two metres wide, but eight metres deep, with lots of cavities and boulders making it a very dangerous place to search."
Det Insp Smith said the matter will now be handed to the coroner.
Originally published as Tragic discovery in search for missing swimmer