PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - Portland police have identified the body of a man recovered from inside a car at the base of the Glenn Jackson Bridge following a tragic crash Sunday.
Portland Police Major Crash Team investigators determined Antonio Amaro-Lopez, 57, of Portland, was the driver recovered from a car found submerged in the Columbia River on Wednesday.
According to police, the vehicle's license plate confirmed it was a 2006 Subaru Tribeca registered to Amaro-Lopez's family.
Authorities began searching the Columbia River after it was reported Sunday evening that a vehicle had driven off the Glenn Jackson Bridge and crashed into the water below.
Based on evidence and witness statements, investigators said it appears Amaro-Lopez lost control and went off the bridge between the Oregon-Washington border and Government Island. Portland Police Major Crash Team investigators believe weather-related road conditions from the winter storm were a factor in the crash.
PPB Sergeant Ty Engstrom said a witness reported the car spinning out before leaving the roadway. The recent snow buried the concrete barriers that line the bridge.
The first few days of searching did not produce any signs of the missing driver or the car. On Wednesday, however, Multnomah County deputies said a dive team was going into the river in response to locating an object that resembled a vehicle, which had sunk below 14 feet of water.
A dive team later recovered Amaro-Lopez's body.
Amaro-Lopez's family and friends, who had realized he was missing after leaving work Sunday, gathered along the banks of the Columbia on Wednesday to pray together in the candlelight to honor the father of three.
"It was very emotional, and I think it was a lot of support for the family," friend Rodolfo Carrillo said at the vigil.
A family member told FOX 12 that Amaro-Lopez worked as a chef in a downtown Portland hotel, as well as in his family's restaurant in Vancouver. He leaves behind a wife, three daughters, and many more loved ones.
The family has set up a GoFundMe account to help with funeral expenses.
Police said plans to recover the vehicle are underway.
The cause of the crash remains under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to contact Officer Garrett Dow at Garrett.Dow@portlandoregon.gov or 503-823-5070.
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