Tributes have been paid to a college lecturer who was discovered dead in a canal a few days before Christmas.
Gary Forkasiewicz’s body was discovered in the Leeds-Liverpool canal on the afternoon of Saturday, December 21.
The Accrington and Rossendale College lecturer, pictured right, was discovered at around 2.30pm floating in the canal on Livesey Branch Road, in Feniscowles.
Mr Forkasiewicz, 53, had been working part-time at the college as a horticulture lecturer for the past 18 months.
His devastated brother Stephen said Mr Forkasiewicz’s death had come as a huge shock to the family.
He said: “It’s an unbelievable shock because he was in good health. It’s come right out of the blue.
“He will be terribly missed by his family and friends.
“The police are looking for leads and trying to establish what happened.
“He didn’t live far from the canal and it was quite popular with walkers so it’s not unusual for him to go walking down the canal close to his house, and he liked the outdoors.”
Stephen, 55, who lives in South Wales, said his brother was known for his keen sense of humour.
He said: “He loved to play the guitar and liked anything to do with the outdoors – walking, sightseeing, that kind of thing. He was an avid sports watcher and liked watching cricket especially.
“He was quite a private person – kept himself to himself. He used to make us laugh a lot because he had a good sense of humour and quite a dry wit.
He would always give you his honest opinion. He was quite forthright and honest and that was one of his strengths.”
Along with Stephen, Mr Forkasiewicz, who lived in Pleasington, leaves mum Jean and brothers Peter, 44, and Karl, 48.
Lancashire Police said the death is being treated as unexplained but there are not believed to be any suspicious circumstances.
An inquest was opened at Blackburn Coroners’ Court on Tuesday, December 31.
Detective Sergeant Adrian McHugh, of Blackburn CID, said officers are keen to trace Mr Forkasiewicz’s last movements. He said: “We know Gary was working until Friday afternoon but we need to establish where he spent Friday night and how he came to be in the canal.”