Published DateCENTER HARBOR — An Ashland man who fell overboard into the waters of Lake Winona on Sunday morning passed away despite the valiant actions of Craig Lutz of Center Harbor who saw the mishap from shore and promptly went to the rescue.
After being pulled from the water, Spencer Hadlock, 66, was taken first to Lakes Region General Hospital then to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center where he passed away. A statement released to the news media by New Hampshire Marine Patrol Monday evening did not specify the time or cause of Hadlock's death.
According to Sgt. Eric Robertson, the incident was reported to the New Hampshire Marine Patrol at approximately 10:30 a.m. on Sunday. Witnesses told Marine Patrol said that Hadlock, who was operating a 14-foot Sea Nymph powered by 6-horsepower outboard, was seated reaching for the motor when he fell into the lake.
Lutz said yesterday that he saw Hadlock fall into the lake and begin treading water before slipping beneath the surface. By then Lutz said that he had launched a canoe and begun paddling toward where he last saw Hadlock, a distance he estimated at 100 yards. Not far from his boat, its stern filling with water, he found Hadlock floating face down on the surface of the lake.
"I didn't try to get him in the canoe," Lutz said. He's a big guy and it was small canoe and I was afraid of tipping it over and then two of us would be in the water. Instead I grabbed his arm and got his face out of the water," he continued. "Then I twisted his arm and held it between my legs to keep his head out of the water." When he reached shore he opened Hadlock's airways and, with an assistance from another bystander, began CPR. He said he and the bystander continued performing CPR until emergency medical personnel from the New Hampton Fire Department arrived some "ten or twenty minutes later."
Lutz said that he could not tell if his efforts to resuscitate Hadlock were successful, but subsequently learned that EMTs found his pulse in the ambulance.
Hadlock was not wearing a personal flotation device.