Alaska State Troopers have released the names of the woman and young child who were found dead Tuesday night after falling into the Matanuska River near Palmer, according to responders.

Amanda Lange, 29, and 5-year-old Gabriel Lange, both of Anchorage were identified as the two bodies found, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Bodies of Amanda Lange, 29, and Gabriel Lange, 5, were found and recovered after falling into the Matanuska River on June 19, 2018 (Credit: Jeremy Thomas Mcmillan)


An initial Alaska State Troopers dispatch on the search received a report just after 9 p.m. that the victims had fallen into the river near Matanuska River Park, off the Old Glenn Highway.

"Investigation shows that the child was playing in the water or walking in the water when somehow he got into deeper water," troopers wrote Wednesday morning. "A. Lange went to rescue the child but both of them got swept up in the river current."

Multiple people were present at the time and a bystander called 911. 

Ken Barkley, the Mat-Su Borough’s deputy director of emergency services, said two fatalities were reported in the search by late Tuesday evening. Their fall into the river, which he said was accidental, occurred along an old bridge on the highway.

“The old bridge is more of a bike path and it was right there,” Barkley said.

Borough dive team members, as well as Butte and Palmer fire crews, responded along with troopers to assist in the search.

Kevin Kelleher contributed information to this story.

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