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NYC fashion designer Michele Savoia found dead in river near yacht

Feb. 16, 2014 at 10:04 PM

NEW YORK, Feb. 16 (UPI) -- Flashy New York fashion designer Michele Savoia was found dead in the Hudson River Sunday, said police who theorized he slipped on the gangplank to his yacht.

Savoia, 55, was still wearing the raccoon coat he was wearing the last time he was seen alive early Thursday, the New York Daily News reported. He had been reported missing Saturday.

The newspaper's sources said police suspected Savoia, known for his art deco-style clothing, had been drinking and didn't think his death involved foul play, the newspaper said. The newspaper said a source said the designer had survived a recent tumble into the river while drunk.

"I knew he was in that water. I am so glad they found his body," Savoia's girlfriend, Juli Berg, 47, told the Daily News, noting the gangplank to his 1955 Cris-Craft was often slippery with ice.

"It's icy, snowy and windy. And the water was really, really rough.

"I messaged him Thursday to check on him, [writing] 'Are you OK in the storm?' I didn't hear from him.

"He seemed so invincible. It shouldn't have ended like this for him. It is so tragic."

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