Pulaski County hunter dies after falling into sinkhole

31-year-old Curtis Powelson was a U.S. Marine stationed at Fort Leonard Wood

POSTED: 01:11 PM CDT Sep 17, 2013    UPDATED: 09:18 PM CDT Sep 17, 2013 
BUCKHORN, Mo. -

The Pulaski County Sheriff says a southwest Missouri hunter died Monday after he fell into a sinkhole while searching for a deer he had shot.

Sheriff Ron Long says Curtis S. Powelson, 31, called his wife, telling her that he was trying to track the animal. When he failed to return home, his wife reported him missing to the Pulaski County Sheriff's Department.

Long says Powelson fell into a 70-foot deep sinkhole, which was about the size of a car at ground level.

Emergency personnel found Powelson's body about 3 a.m. Tuesday. Authorities believe the sinkhole opened up during heavy rains last month but he didn't see it in the dark because it was behind tall foliage.

According to affiliate KSPR, Powelson was a U.S. Marine stationed at Fort Leonard Wood.

The Pulaski County assistant coroner ruled the death accidental.