The search for a missing Hamilton man continues today as the national police dive squad scour the Waikato River for clues.
Kayne Kohu has been missing since about 9.45pm on Sunday after he got into trouble while swimming at a small beach near Hamilton Gardens.
Waikato police search and rescue Sergeant Vince Ranger said a friend of Kohu's dived in after him to try and help but he also got into difficulties and the pair were swept more than 100m down the river.
At the same time, a third friend, a woman, ran along the nearby jetty to try and help them while calling emergency services.
The friend who tried to help Kohu managed to swim across to the southern side of the river and clamber up an embankment, but Kohu did not surface.
An aerial search which included the Westpac Waikato Rescue Helicopter, Fire and Emergency NZ drone and police search boat was carried out on the night, and each day since, with the national dive squad arriving yesterday morning.
As of 1pm today, Kohu was still missing, Ranger said.
The dive squad would continue its search this afternoon and then the operation would be reassessed.
Ranger said they would take into account how much area they've searched, and how much more there was to do.
The Waikato River is a notorious stretch of water to negotiate, especially for dive squad crews who had described it as "difficult", he said.
Ranger acknowledged the anguish Kohu's family and friends were going through at the moment.
Yesterday, cousin Te Hikuwai Kohu described her cousin as smart and talented.
"He was really smart and he was a black belt at 11 or 12, he used to do karate growing up, he was smart as."
Kayne Kohu had been a chef at Camarosa Restaurant in Hamilton, and had signed up to do his apprenticeship there just two weeks ago.
Restaurant owner Andrew Clarke said he and the rest of his staff were "gutted" to hear he was missing.
"It's so gutting, eh. He had so much to give. He was a really, really good guy, an absolute star."
Kohu was fun but a hard worker at the same time.
"He was always keen to help out and really interested in bettering himself, too, you know."