The body of a man pulled from the Kennebec River in Pittston was identified Monday as that of Readfield resident Jonathan Barber, 22, who was reported missing last week.

Kennebec County Sheriff Randall Liberty said Monday that Barber, of 41 Barber Drive, went to MaineGeneral Medical Center’s Seton campus in Waterville on Sept. 7.

“He was released on his own and his brother said he wasn’t in his right frame of mind,” Liberty said.
 

Barber’s brother, Benjamin, said Monday that Jonathan had had a rough time since their father died in January.

“He was having some psychological problems,” he said.

Barber was last seen in Waterville and his body showed no sign of foul play when it was discovered Saturday in the river in Pittston, according state police. Pittston is about 26 river miles downstream from downtown Waterville.

A missing-person report about Barber was filed Wednesday by the Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office, but Liberty said officials were unable to find Barber.

Liberty said officials were able to identify Barber’s body because of a special tattoo.

He said he did not know how Barber died. State police are investigating that, he said.

Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the state Department of Public Safety, also did not know the cause of death.

“The medical examiner tells me that it is pending additional studies,” McCausland said Monday afternoon. “I don’t have specifics as to what that entails.”

A news release McCausland issued Sunday said residents found the body of a young man Saturday near Smith Town Road in Pittston and an autopsy conducted by the state Medical Examiner’s Office showed no signs of foul play. Heavy rain fell between the time Barber disappeared and when his body was found.

Benjamin Barber said his brother graduated from Maranacook Community High School in 2008 and attended Thomas College in Waterville, where he majored in business and owned College Pro Painters.

“He was a very good businessman,” Benjamin Barber said. “This year alone, he booked over $100,000 in sales.”

He said he and his brother were the only children in the family and were part of a group of 15 friends who did everything together.

“He was a brother to so many people,” he said. “He was a great friend to a lot of people. He was just a great person to be around.”

A benefit spaghetti supper and concert will be held from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at Ladd Recreation Center on Gott Road in Wayne to help the family defray funeral expenses. The concert will follow at 41 Mount Pisgah Road.

The Golden Prize will play songs in memory of Jonathan Barber, who was a wonderful son, brother, nephew and friend, according to Benjamin Barber.

The date of the service is to be determined.

Amy Calder — 861-9247
[email protected]