(ORANGE BEACH, Ala.) - Orange Beach police are still investigating the drowning death of a 42-year-old Pensacola man.
Officials say Mark Bryant's body was recovered around 4:00 Friday morning just south of the Boggy Point Boat Launch in Perdido Pass near Bird Island.
It's the latest of several drownings off Gulf Coast beaches.
"There was a search helicopter with it's lights on. He was searching here over the water," said Stephen Sharman of Atlanta. He saw the search crews scanning the waters near Bird Island Thursday night around 10:30, looking for 42-year-old Mark Bryant.
"There were three people on a boat in the area of Bird Island. One of the boaters came up missing. They called Alabama Marine Police," said Orange Beach Aquatics and Safety Director Melvin Shepard.
A lot of questions still remain as to how the man drowned.
"I'm not sure if he jumped out of the boat, fell out or if in fact he was on the beach and went in the water swimming. That information is still under investigation," said Shepard.
Teams with boats and sonar equipment from multiple agencies showed up to help find the missing swimmer.
The Orange Beach Dive Team was called to the scene as well as mutual aid from Bon Secour Fire, Daphne Search and Rescue, and North Baldwin County Search and Rescue.
Orange Beach Fire divers found Bryant's body near the Boggy Point boat launch 12 feet below water.
"People have got to be careful. We have the flags posted for a reason," said Shepard.
Shepard says Gulf Coast beaches will stay packed this weekend with folks still celebrating the Fourth Of July.
He says swimming in Perdido Pass is especially dangerous.
"That area has very bad currents whether tides are going in or out, strong rip tides. We keep red flags posted in that area everyday of the year. It can be very dangerous to swimmers," he said.
Orange Beach Police wouldn't say whether alcohol was involved. They are waiting on toxicology reports. Police don't suspect foul play.