MYSTERY surrounds the death of two men found yards apart at the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal.
One man, who is believed to have suffered a heart attack, was found on the towpath at Purton while the other man was found in the water.
The discovery was made by a member of the public at 9.45am on Sunday and emergency services raced to the scene. But police said both men had died.
Police, fire and rescue crews, ambulance teams, an air ambulance and volunteer rescuers from Severn Area Rescue Association were called to the scene on a stretch of the canal towards Slimbridge, between Manor Farm and the Decoy Pool.
One body was found on the towpath on the River Severn side of the canal, it is understood.
“We were deployed this morning,” said Geoff Dawe from SARA in nearby Sharpness. “There was a deceased person recovered from the canal. There was a secondary incident which was dealt with by the air ambulance.”
Carolyn Wilcox, who lives in Purton, said there had been a major presence of emergency services personnel.
“We could see the helicopters and police out first thing this morning,” she said. “A helicopter landed on the towpath and there must have been three ambulances and two police cars at least.”
A police spokesman said: “The bodies of two men have been found in Purton. Officers were called to the canal there at approximately 9.45am today.
“The deaths of both men are currently being treated as non suspicious. Police are in the process of identifying next of kin and the coroner has been informed.”