NEAR GOLD BEACH, Ore. — The Curry County Sheriff’s Office reports one person has died after a boat capsized at the mouth of the Rogue River on Saturday morning.
Deputies responded to two 911 calls from witnesses to a boating accident at the mouth of the Rogue River at around 7:30 a.m. The callers reported that an 18-foot boat with at least two people on board had capsized near the north jetty as it was attempting to cross the bar outwards. Deputies located the overturned boat about three hundred yards off shore of the north jetty in about 12 to 14-foot swells.
Near the boat they located the ship’s two occupants, later identified as two men from Cottage Grove. One was holding onto a seat cushion and the other was face down in the water and unresponsive when deputies found him. Deputies pulled the unresponsive person onto their boat and then threw a lifeline to the other.
CPR was performed on the unresponsive man for more than an hour before he was pronounced dead. Investigators identified him as the boat operator, 56-year-old Thomas Whiting. The passenger, 36-year-old Charlie Johnson, and Whiting’s nephew, was transported to Curry General Hospital for hypothermia.
The Sheriff’s Office says there was also a female yellow lab on board but it has not been located.