The body of former Buffalo Bills wide receiver James Hardy was discovered in the Maumee River in Allen County, Ind., on Wednesday, according to the Indianapolis Star.
Hardy’s mother reported her son missing on May 30, and it appeared the body had been in the water for some time, per the report. Allen County Coroner’s Office chief investigator Michael Burris said the cause of Hardy’s death is under investigation. The Fort Wayne Police Department is also involved in the case, per the report. Police released the following statement, per the Buffalo News:
“Once on scene officers observed a body floating on the north side of the dam entangled in a log jam. The Fort Wayne Fire Department’s Water Rescue Team was summoned to the scene and with their resources the body was removed from the river and then taken to the Northeast Indiana Forensic Center where an autopsy will be performed to determine an identification, cause and manner of death.”
Officials later confirmed the body was Hardy. The Bills also released a statement on Hardy’s death:
“We are saddened to learn of the passing of James Hardy today,” the statement read. “We send our condolences to the Hardy family as they deal with this tragic loss.”
Hardy was an outstanding receiver at Indiana University before being selected by the Bills in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft. In a two-year career in Buffalo, he caught 10 passes for 96 yards and two touchdowns. Hardy (6-foot-4, 220 pounds) also briefly played basketball at IU in the 2004-05 season, per the Star. In football, he caught 36 career touchdown passes for the Hoosiers from 2005-2007.