WESTPORT, Mass. Two duck hunters died and a third was rushed to a hospital Tuesday after they fell into the frigid waters of the Westport River when their boat capsized.
Bristol District Attorney Sam Sutter’s office said Steven James, 53, of Marshfield and Robert Becher, 55, of Cromwell, Conn., died.
The surviving hunter was identified as Gregg Angell, 51, of Westport. He was taken to Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, and is expected to survive.
The hunters’ skiff was found overturned at about 9 a.m. Tuesday, Westport Harbormaster Richard Earle said.
“It was cold, there was freezing spray, they had what appeared to be an aluminum boat about 16 feet long,” Earle said. “It was pretty choppy and icy.”
Coast Guard Petty Officer Robert Simpson said the water temperature was about 35 degrees and the air temperature was about 8 degrees at the time. Simpson said two of the hunters were found in the water, about half a mile from the overturned boat. The surviving hunter was rescued by a Coast Guard helicopter and had symptoms of hypothermia, Simpson said.
Lt. Mike Deal, pilot of the Coast Guard rescue helicopter that picked up Angell, told the Standard-Times of New Bedford that the Cape Cod-based crew saw the man on the bank of Corey’s Island in the river, waving his arms. Deal said he was “ambulatory” but “out of it” from hypothermia and needed help getting into the rescue basket. “He could not give us his name,” Deal told the newspaper.
The district attorney’s spokesman said the deaths, which remain under investigation, are not considered suspicious.
Another man remains missing after a duck hunting trip in Fairhaven last week. Fairhaven police said the mother of Dana Dourdeville, 21, a Brown University student from Marion, Mass., found his car parked at West Island State Beach on New Year’s Eve. The Coast Guard found his kayak about 2 miles east of West Island.