Cedar Rapids family waits for remains to be found

Published: May. 17, 2022 at 10:39 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The family of Erik Spaw, the driver of a submerged truck found in the Cedar River, is still waiting for his remains to be found.

Spaw’s family members have posted flyers in the area of Ellis Road NW. That’s where Spaw was last seen May 6th driving between work sites. His truck was recovered from the river May 7th.

The family believes complications from Spaw’s Type 1 Diabetes contributed to his crash. His mother, Karen Spaw, said he was trying to change the way he managed his disease to “get better control of his eyesight.” She added, “He was kind of doing things differently, you know, and kind of trying to get it adjusted better.”

Family members remember Spaw as a daredevil who had loved to jet ski, snowmobile, and race cars. His brother Johnny Spaw said, “Back in the day, as far as racing, he’s a really good stock car driver. Won a lot of races at Hawkeye Downs in the ‘90s and the Pro Stock Division and then he won a modified championship I believe in 1994.”

Both Spaw’s mother and brother said numbness, caused by his diabetes, led to the end of Spaw’s racing. Johnny Spaw said, “He would complain about losing feeling in his hands when he was racing. That’s probably not a good thing when you’re driving a car at high speeds, so he kind of called it quits.”

The family grieves Spaw, but they also feel they are in limbo. Karen Spaw said, “We’re just kind of still in shock, but we’re really hoping that they find him because it’s so hard to not know, you know, for sure that he’s deceased and we’re just waiting.”

Johnny Spaw said, ”Just wish we could find him so we could get this over with. It’s not going to bring him back, but you need the old closure word everybody talks about. I don’t know. It’ll help, but it’s not going to help.”

The family has announced a GoFundMe page in the hopes of raising money for a search and recovery dive team to help locate Erik. As of writing this article, it has raised more than $6,000. You can check out the link for that here.

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