Man drowns in Lake Fenton Friday

Published: Jun. 26, 2020 at 10:21 PM EDT
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(06/26/20) - A family is grieving following the second tragedy on Lake Fenton in a little over a month.

The Genesee County sheriff says a lake resident in his 70s took on too much water and died despite a united effort to save him. His wife, sheriff paramedics, passersby and the Genesee County Marine Patrol Division all pitched in.

"God bless his wife. She jumped in and tried to help but it was too late," said Sheriff Chris Swanson.

The sheriff says incident happened near Woodhull Landing and Case's Island in Lake Fenton around 4:30 p.m. Friday. The water was roughly 50 feet deep.

"Another night where a husband and wife went out to enjoy the water. He jumped in the water and he had one of those noodles, but it was not a certified PFD (personal flotation device). As he tried to swim closer to the boat the boat drifted away," Swanson said.

In addition to the man's wife, bystanders tried to keep the man above water.

Paramedics performed CPR for about 40 minutes, but it was not enough.

The man, whose name hasn't been released, was a Fenton resident and was in his early 70s.

"What we need to remember is the water is unforgiving. It doesn't matter how much experience you have. It doesn't matter how much time you have on the water you can't afford to lose your focus on the water," Swanson said.

It's the second death on Lake Fenton in about a month. Teenager Lexi Simon died in a jet ski accident on May 24. The sheriff also confirmed a drowning in Lobdell Lake on June 17.



With more people on the lake and not traveling as much, Swanson says it's a reminder to stay focused at all times while enjoying the water.

"You can never take for granted that by one mistake it could cost you your life or someone else's and that's why we do these boater safety classes," he said. "We've done back to back weeks and trained almost 200 people on CPR and stop the bleed and boater safety. Those are very important."

Other than some additional follow up, the sheriff says there won't be any further investigation with this case.

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