Dad drowns trying to save daughter

Frank Gale
Published on August 26, 2014

There was sadness in Cape St. George as a community mourned the loss of a young man who died Monday while trying to rescue his daughter.

The 36-year-old man drowned Monday afternoon after he tried to assist his teenage daughter, who was in distress while swimming off Cape St. George.

Mayor Peter Fenwick said the death affects almost everyone in the small town due to people being related and those who know members of the family.

Fenwick heard the man was trying to reach in to haul her out of the water when he went in himself. A second man pulled the young girl to safety, but wasn’t able to get to the father in time.

“It’s really a terrible tragedy when you consider the fact the he was trying to save his daughter’s life when he lost his own,” said Fenwick. “It was very commendable and his loss is really sad.”

The mayor said the man was renovating a house and was married and had least two daughters, including the daughter he was trying to rescue.

Fenwick said the area in which the girl was swimming is located in Cape St. George near a cove in

St. George’s Bay. He said the winds on Monday made the bay choppy and there is often an undertow in that area when the waves are high. While he said there is some danger at the location, there are very few people in Cape St. George who hadn’t swum there.

The Bay St. George detachment of the RCMP was notified of the incident at 4:35 p.m. Monday after the man had been taken to Sir Thomas Roddick Hospital in Stephenville, where he was pronounced dead.

The RCMP did not identify the man as of Tuesday afternoon.

Fenwick said in addition to the Cape St. George Ambulance responding to the drowning, the Cape St. George Volunteer Fire Department and its auxiliary vehicle also responded.