Fellow fishermen help save 5 from capsized boat

ILWACO, Wash. (AP) -- A retired Portland police sergeant out fishing with his wife and two friends helped rescue five people after their guided fishing boat capsized on the Columbia River bar. The Coast Guard recovered the body of a sixth person.

Lonn Sweeney says he started following the other boat back across the bar, where the river and Pacific Ocean currents collide, after the Coast Guard warned Friday morning that sea conditions were growing dangerous.

When he saw the other boat had capsized, he and his crew swung into action. Another Portland officer, Randy Vanderhoof, told Sweeney where to steer and the rescuers tossed life rings and life vests to the men in the water, pulling them aboard one by one in 10-foot seas.

Says Sweeney, "Today we were just in the right spot to help some people." And he adds, "We got five but we couldn't get the last one. We couldn't find him."

Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class David Mosley says the five survivors did not need medical attention. The name of the man who died was not immediately released.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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