Survivor recollects rescue from frigid Maine lake — Midcoast — Bangor Everyday Information — BDN Maine

The tale starts about 50 many years in the past when a Connecticut male saved two adult men fishing in a canoe that capsized on a lake in early spring. He introduced the adult men to his property and warmed them up with espresso and blankets.

Lower to April 2019, these men’s savior was himself rescued when his boat capsized on Damariscotta Lake in Jefferson.

“It’s an ironic point. I saved two men and all of a unexpected I require the very same aid and necessary anyone to appear to my rescue,” David Drever, 80, of Washington, reported.

Drever has fished on Damariscotta Lake for virtually 45 many years, but mid-early morning on Monday, April 22, he identified himself in the approximately 45-diploma h2o.

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Drever experienced been fishing for lake trout on his more mature 14-foot aluminum boat when he repositioned himself soon after getting out on the lake for a 50 percent-hour. He misplaced his harmony when he shifted his fat.

“When I begun heading in excess of, I pulled the boat with me to consider to proper myself and that was a massive error for the reason that it sunk the again conclude of the boat,” Drever reported.

Drever was fishing in the principal basin of Damariscotta Lake, which is about 50-55 toes deep, he reported.

“I begun wondering rather large,” he reported. “I begun to weigh my possibilities.”

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Because the boat was upside down, his very first strategy of motion was to climb on top rated of the boat to get portion of his system out of the h2o. On the other hand, he could not stabilize the boat more than enough to get on top rated.

Immediately after offering up on the very first strategy, Drever recognized his everyday living jacket was caught on the boat. A person of his arms experienced appear out of the flotation system, which was not zipped up.

At a single position, he attained for his cell phone to get in touch with 911, but it did not do the job.

He appeared at the shore, which was about 350 yards absent, and questioned if he could swim there.

“I begun wondering, ‘What am I heading to do when I get to shore? I’m heading to be absolutely fatigued I’m continue to heading to be just as frozen,’” Drever reported.

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Time was introducing up. Drever reported he begun to stress for the reason that he experienced been in the h2o for 15-20 minutes.

“I’m starting off to reduce it I really don't have considerably heading for me,” he imagined. “So that is when I begun hollering for aid. Which is the only possibility I experienced still left.”

David Reiss, 51, of Westport Island, was out fishing at the very same time. He was out making ready for the Maine Bass Country Club Event that was scheduled for the adhering to 7 days.

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“I just occurred to have the 7 days off from do the job and I appeared at the temperature and I reported, ‘Well, I superior go now for the reason that the relaxation of the week’s temperature was heading to be awful,’” Reiss reported.

He virtually did not go soon after his trailer received trapped in a ditch off his driveway even though he was backing up. Two individuals on their way to do the job stopped and assisted him out of the ditch. Reiss created it to Damariscotta Lake about an hour and a 50 percent afterwards than he experienced prepared.

On that working day, Reiss was not listening to songs in his headphones like he generally does. He was also fishing in a unique conclude of the lake than normal.

“At that time there was no wind, there was no other boat visitors, there was not any seem from the shore,” he reported.

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Drever screamed for aid. Reiss imagined he read one thing, but assumed it was anyone on shore or doing the job outdoors.

“But then I read it once again, so now I’m sort of listening. I’m continue to fishing, but I’m listening,” he reported.

When Drever screamed for a 3rd time, Reiss begun in the path of the seem.

“God inclined, the male is in excess of there fishing with his motor off and read it,” Drever reported. “I could not imagine it. When I noticed that boat coming up in excess of there and turned towards me, [I thought], ‘My God, I feel I experienced an further 5 minutes of everyday living all of a unexpected.’”

Reiss experienced been in excess of a mile absent from the place Drever fell into the lake. When he very first noticed Drever’s upside-down boat, he imagined it was an ice cake.

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Drever’s boat experienced drifted about 20 yards absent from him by the time Reiss arrived.

“I was not panicked I was not fearful,” Reiss reported of his thoughts when he received to Drever. “I just understood that this personal necessary to get on my boat.”

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He envisioned that if he known as crisis expert services, Drever would be good.

Reiss tried using various techniques to get Drever on to his boat.

“Once I experienced his hand, I was not heading to enable go,” he reported.

Right before waking up in an ambulance, Drever’s very last memory was getting pulled into the again of the boat and looking at his rescuer’s facial area. Reiss reported Drever’s system was earlier the position of shivering and he understood he was hypothermic.

“If he did not display up when he did, I likely would not have experienced much more than a moment still left,” Drever reported.

Immediately after positioning Drever in a fleece cap to heat up and contacting 911, Reiss attained out to the man or woman he understood would be readily available to aid — Joe Holland, of Jefferson.

Holland has acknowledged both of those Drever and Reiss for a lengthy time.

“He was the very first man or woman that arrived to intellect … for the reason that you know Joe, he’s generally there,” Reiss reported.

Holland achieved them at the boat start with blankets and assisted to heat Drever by rubbing him for “what felt like for good,” Holland reported.

Like Drever, Holland has expertise aiding individuals out of the h2o who had been suffering from hypothermia. A person of these moments, Holland and Reiss had been on a journey to New York, fishing in the St. Lawrence River.

“I feel realizing that, and realizing I was close by, he attained out to me,” Holland reported.

Reiss was ready to obtain some of the merchandise that fell out of Drever’s boat when it capsized.

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Waldoboro Unexpected emergency Professional medical Solutions introduced Drever to LincolnHealth’s Miles Campus. Healthcare facility staff members received his temperature up and ran some exams.

“They figured I may possibly have experienced a coronary heart attack… the following point I know they are transporting me down to Maine Med,” Drever reported.

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He was offered Heparin, a blood thinner, just before going through coronary heart exams. Troubles from the Heparin induced nerve injury to his still left leg.

He went into operation for the blood clots in his again.

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Entirely, Drever invested a 7 days in the medical center, the place his spouse frequented him each working day.

At present, Drever has a brace on his still left leg. He can use a walker, but also has a wheelchair. He will start out actual physical treatment shortly to see if he can get the nerve to purpose once again, he reported.

Drever and Reiss are “grateful” for just about every other and to be the place the other was that early morning.

“Damariscotta Lake is a risky location in the springtime. It is a single of the very first lakes that thaws, so it is a single of the very first sites that individuals go to fish,” Reiss reported.

As a semiprofessional bass fisherman, he has security suggestions for individuals who go out fishing.

He indicates that when individuals go out, they must try to remember to use a everyday living jacket, with a whistle on a single shoulder strap for quick accessibility.

Reiss reported it is greatest for individuals to have a comprehensive established of dry garments to modify into in scenario a boat capsizes.

And finally, boaters must convey to anyone the place and for how lengthy they will be out fishing, he reported.

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In addition to using security safeguards, Holland reported it is critical to “Always shell out awareness to your circumstance close to you and generally glance to aid your fellow male,” mentioning the adult men who assisted Reiss get to the lake that working day.

The two Davids achieved for the very first time given that the rescue at an job interview with The Lincoln County Information. Drever reported the conference felt like “closure.”

“He’s heading to be my pal for the relaxation of my everyday living, I know that,” Drever reported of Reiss.

Immediately after his in the vicinity of-dying expertise, Drever reported of fishing once again: “I’d go out in a moment.”


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